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Intertrust files patent suit against Apple

SUNNYVALE, Calif. (AP) -- Intertrust Technologies Corp. has filed a lawsuit against Apple Inc., saying Wednesday that the iPhone and iPad maker infringes on 15 of its patents.

Founded in 1990, Intertrust develops and licenses software and technology to help entertainment and media companies protect copyrights. The Silicon Valley company is a private joint venture owned by Sony, Philips and financial firm Stephens Inc.

The lawsuit, filed in U.S. District Court in the Northern District of California, covers a broad range of Apple products. These include the iPhone and iPad, Mac computers, iTunes, the App Store and other technologies.

Apple declined to comment.

Technology companies from Apple to Samsung to Google to businesses that exist solely to license patents have ratcheted up patent lawsuits in recent years. The big tech companies use patents as a weapon to beat down competitors.

Shares of Cupertino, Calif.-based Apple fell $2.34 to $452.15 in afternoon trading.