Apple was in court yesterday, defending itself against accusations of copying its Siri voice recognition tool from a similar service by a Chinese firm.

Apple's Siri voice recognition tool was copied from the rival Xiao i Robot software, according to developer and patent holder Zhizhen Network Technology Co.

Xiao i Robot was patented in 2004, three years before development began on Apple's Siri, and has a similar function. Zhizhen believes that Siri infringes on its intellectual property, and has pursued a patent infringement case.

Apple appeared in court yesterday to defend itself against the accusations and to request that the case be thrown out, a plea which was unsuccessful. The trial will begin in earnest in July.

"[Zhizhen] will ask Apple to stop manufacturing and selling products using its patent rights, once Apple's infringement is confirmed," said Si Weijiang, a lawyer representing the firm, in a statement.

Apple patent infringement case

Via AFP

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Apple patent round-up: Slide-to-unlock, original iPhone, solar powered iPhone