An overseas communications firm is suing Apple for promoting its iPhone handset as a touch-screen digital book reader, a concept it claims to have patented over seven years ago, Apple Insider reports. In a seven-page complaint filed with a Virginia district court March 23, Berne, Switzerland-based MONEC Holding Ltd. accuses the iPhone maker of patent infringement, unfair trade practices, monopolization, and tortious interference for allegedly treading on its January 2002 patent No. 6,335,678, titled "Electronic device, preferably an electronic book." In its lawsuit, the firm takes issue with Apple’s move to distribute digital book-reading applications through the App Store, which it sees as an endorsement by Apple that its touch-screen handset can serve as a capable eBook reader. MONEC believes those advances directly violate its patent, which describes a "light-weight" electronic device with a "touch-screen" LCD display. The Swiss firm maintains that Apple is "well aware" of its patent and is seeking an injunction to preventing Apple from further infringement…

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