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Monday, May 22, 2006, 06:00 am PT (09:00 am ET)

Briefly: Apple sues Creative; Jobs in Manhattan

Apple files countersuit

Apple Computer appears to have responded to a lawsuit filed by Singapore-based Creative Technology with a suit of its own.

According to Bloomberg, on May 15th — the same day Creative filed complaints about Apple — the iPod maker filed a counter suit, accusing Creative of infringing on four iPod-related patents.

"Creative proactively held discussions with Apple in our efforts to explore amicable solutions," Phil O'Shaughnessy, a spokesman for Creative, said. "At no time during these discussions or at any other time did Apple mention to us the patents it raised in its lawsuit."

In a complaint with the U.S. International Trade Commission, Creative seeks an order to block imports of the iPod, most of which are made in China. The company also filed a lawsuit against Apple in District Court in San Francisco. The suit is likely to be put on hold while the trade complaint is heard.

Jobs makes New York appearance

True to expectations, Apple chief executive Steve Jobs made an appearance in Midtown Manhattan last Friday to usher in the company's latest flagship retail store in the underground concourse of the GM building at 767 Fifth Avenue.

In an on-site interview with CNBC, Jobs fielded questions about Apple's retail strategy, the Intel transition and an Apple iPhone.

He said the company's rapidly-expanding retail initiative is aimed at offering customers the highest levels of service. However, he said this doesn't mean that Apple plans to slow its Macintosh offerings through authorized resellers and big-box retailers like Circuit City and Best Buy.

Asked why Apple chose Intel to power its latest line of Macintosh computers over AMD Jobs said, "You know, AMD's got some interesting products at the very high-end of the server space, but the part of the market that we concentrate on the most is notebooks and consumer desktops, and for that Intel has the best chips."

Jobs added, "Right now Intel's roadmap looks strong for the kind of products that we build."

When asked when customers would be able to purchase an iPhone, Jobs said, "You know, we never talk about unannounced products, but if we ever do announce something like that I'd love to talk to you about it then."