Nintendo has won a patent infringement lawsuit filed back in 2009 by Wall Wireless LLC concerning the DS and DSi handheld gaming systems. In February of 2009, Texas-based Wall Wireless LLC sued Nintendo claiming that its DS and DSi handhelds violated a patent it held related to wireless communication technology.
Electronics manufacturer Philips claims that the Wii U infringes several of the company's patents and is seeking to have the system banned from being sold in the United States. Philips claims that Nintendo copied technologies that replicate a "user's real-life actions in-game" and that it uses a patent related to "user interfaces designed to be navigated by a pointing device" (such as a Wii Remote).
The jury foreman in the most recent Apple v. Samsung patent showdown says that the biggest loser in the case wasn't the combatants, but consumers. Speaking to the San Jose Mercury News, jury foreman Thomas Dunham, a retired IBM supervisor who delivered the jury's decision in the case on Monday, said that the case was bad for consumers in the long run, but that he hoped it would help these two companies finally settle the matter outside of a courtroom in the future.
Nintendo is involved in another lawsuit with a familiar adversary, this time over a Wii U patent violation claim. Nintendo Co. Ltd, Nintendo of America and other companies are being accused of patent infringement by a company called Secure Axcess, LLC.
That company claims that its patent issued on February 18, 2003 for "a computer providing multiple display capability where one display presents the current document and another display may show a true display of a previously opened document," was infringed upon by Nintendo.
Patent licensing company Marathon Patent Group's wholly-owned subsidiary CRFD Research Inc. has filed five separate patent infringement lawsuits in the United States District Court for the District of Delaware against TV and movie streaming services Hulu Netflix and Amazon (we assume for Prime); music streaming service Spotify; and Verizon.
The Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) has asked the U.S. Supreme Court to reign in overbroad patents and "clean up the mess that is software patent law" in an amicus filed last Thursday. The EFF's amicus brief was related to a case the court is set to hear: the long-running Alice Corp. v. CLS Bank. The case is over a patented computer system that helps close financial transaction by avoiding settlement risk.
A German court has dismissed two cases - one against Apple and another filed against HTC - by patent-assertion entity IPCom. The court rejected the company's assertions in both cases that its 3G/UMTS cellular standard patent was violated. The company was asking the court to award it $2.2 billion in its case against Apple.
The decision comes on the heels of a letter sent to the EU signed by Apple, Samsung, Google, Microsoft, and other tech companies deriding entities like IPCom, whose only business is to file lawsuits against other companies and extract settlements.
The Obama Administration held a press conference today detailing how it wants to reform the U.S. patent system, with one key ingredient being crowd-sourcing. Michelle Lee, director of the Silicon Valley branch of the US Patent and Trademark Office, was one of the key speakers at a White House patent event today.
Nintendo announced today that it has prevailed in a patent infringement case at the International Trade Commission brought by Technology Properties Limited LLC, Phoenix Digital Solutions LLC and Patriot Scientific Corporation. All three of the plaintiffs in the case are patent-licensing companies (companies who hold rights to patents, but do not actually use them to produce products or services). The commission sided with Nintendo, ruling that that the Nintendo 3DS and Nintendo DSi systems do not infringe the companies' patents.
Cisco Systems is taking on the role of a white knight in fighting a patent house jointly owned by some of the biggest names in tech including Apple, Microsoft, Blackberry, Ericsson, and Sony. Cisco is fighting on behalf of its customers who have been sued by the company - Rockstar Consortium - for violating patents it purchased from Nortel.
A new patent filed by AT&T Mobility in September 2013 and published this month hopes to keep customers from "abusing a telecommunications system" by consuming too much bandwidth, according to a report on TorrentFreak. The ultimate goal of such a patent is to apparently keep users from using certain services within the confines of packages they subscribe to.
Nintendo has acquired the patents of IA Labs following a legal victory in court over the company related to patents - but the company secured them outside a courtroom, sort of. Nintendo announced that it secured the patents officially on January 7, during a sheriff's sale in Montgomery County, Maryland. The company sued Nintendo in 2010, claiming that it violated several of its patents in Wii Fit and Wii Fit Plus. Nintendo successfully defended against the lawsuit and obtained judgment in its favor in February 2012.
According to a report on Law 360 Nintendo must pay a percentage of its 3DS sales to Tomita Technologies. The company was ordered by U.S. District Court Judge Jed Rakoff to pay 1.82 percent of the sale cost of every Nintendo 3DS and 3DS XL to Tomita Technologies International Ltd., which holds a patent for a glasses-less 3D display. The Judge ruled in December that Nintendo had in fact infringed on the company's patents.
Rockstar Consortium (partly owned by Apple and Microsoft), a patent-holding company formed from the bankrupt Canadian telecom company Nortel, sued Google and manufacturers of Android phones over patents almost two months ago. Earlier this week Google punched back at the company, filing a counter-suit seeking to invalidate Rockstar's patents. That's a normal step for a defendant in a patent lawsuit, but Google didn't file its counter-claim in the East Texas court where Rockstar sued them. Instead it filed in Northern California.
The IndieGoGo campaign for Operation Ninja S.T.A.R. has managed to raise $2,547 of its $17,500 goal, with 26 more days to go. Launched last week, Operation Ninja S.T.A.R. seeks to raise funds to closely examine a patent owned by Treehouse Avatar Technologies to see if there is any evidence that the invention existed prior to the patent application. Their ultimate goal is to render the patent invalid.
Inspired by the software patent trolling efforts of patent house Treehouse Avatar Technologies, a new IndieGoGo campaign launched today seeks to raise funds for a project that will ultimately help the little guy. The project is called Operation Ninja S.T.A.R., and seeks to raise $17,500 to closely examine a patent owned by Treehouse Avatar Technologies to see if there is any evidence that the invention existed prior to the patent application. Their ultimate goal is to render the patent invalid.
On Friday the Supreme Court announced that it will take on a case that will examine the validity of software patents. The court will hear Alice v. CLS Bank, which will attempt to answer the question of whether so-called software patents are impermissibly abstract. In May of this year a divided federal court was deadlocked on the case, with five judges voting to strike down patent claims to a "computer system programmed to implement a financial transaction," and five judges ruling to uphold the claims.
The Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) issued a statement today praising the House of Representatives passing a bill to deal with patent trolling. The bill, the Innovation Act, was supported by a majority of House members, winning passage by a vote of 323-89. All that's left is for the Senate to take up the bill, which it plans to do before the end of the year.
While the EFF applauds the House's efforts, it also notes that the Innovation Act is by no means a perfect bill:
We have learned two things this week about Treehouse Avatar Technologies. Inc.: first, they are owned by a publicly traded Canadian company called - Wi-LAN Inc. (TSX:WIN, NASDAQ:WILN) and that the company has settled its lawsuit with Turbine. Apparently rather than fighting the accusations that Turbine violated its software patents the makers of D&D Online and The Lord of the Rings Online have opted to enter into a licensing agreement with the firm.
Sen. Claire McCaskill (D-MO) convened a meeting of the Senate Commerce Committee this week, with the goal of ending the practice by patent trolls using demand letters to extort funds from individuals and companies, according to a lengthy report in Ars Technica. The meeting brings four key personalities in patent reform to Capitol Hill to pick their brains on how to go about accomplishing such a lofty goal.
AT&T Inc. apparently has filed a patent on a system designed to prevent "illegal and criminal activities" on gaming networks by stopping what they describe as "predatory users" from being able to come into contact with others who are considered minors, according to IPWatchdog.
The Obama administration could have overturned a patent ruling that will keep some Samsung devices out of the country, but it has declined to do so, according to The Hill. Earlier this year the U.S. International Trade Commission (USITC) ruled that some of Samsung's devices violated patents held by Apple. It was a ruling that the Obama administration had the authority to reverse, but U.S.
In what can only be described as ironic, Activision Blizzard has filed a lawsuit against Worlds, Inc. for patent infringement. In its lawsuit, the World of Warcraft maker says that Worlds, Inc. has violated two of its patents that relate to navigating a 3D space and the interaction of objects with a 3D space. The irony is that Worlds, Inc. sued NCSoft - a lawsuit the two companies settled in April of 2010 - related to scalable chat systems and another one related to interacting in a virtual space.
A U.S. District Court jury in Seattle has awarded Microsoft $15 million in damages related to its long-running patent infringement lawsuit with Motorola. This signals the end of litigation (save the appeals process) in the long-running legal dispute over claims by Motorola that the Xbox 360 infringed on several of its patents related to video decoding and wi-fi technology.
Software developers and patent trolls take note: the New Zealand government has passed a law that essentially makes the practice of patenting software illegal and unenforceable in the region. The law, which was under consideration and amended several times over the last five years, repeals and replaces the Patents Act 1953, which was based on the United Kingdom Patents Act 1949.
Bloomberg is reporting that Nintendo has been ordered to pay inventor and former Sony employee Seijiro Tomita $15.1 million dollars for infringing on the technology he created that was allegedly used for the 3DS hand-held gaming device. The $15.1 million represents about half of the $30.2 million Tomita was awarded by a jury when he won his lawsuit against Nintendo in March of this year.
A federal judge in Seattle has swept through a list of experts that both Microsoft and Motorola want to testify in the continuation of their contentious court battle over a technology licensing dispute related to wireless technology used in the Xbox 360. The back and forth between Microsoft and Google subsidiary Motorola is about how much Microsoft should pay for essential technology on a reasonable and nondiscriminatory (RAND) basis.
The Obama administration has lifted an International Trade Commission ban on older models of Apple's iOS devices (iPhones and iPads). As a general rule, presidents do not intervene in cases handled by the ITC - the last time an ITC ban was overturned was in 1987. The news was revealed over the weekend by U.S. Trade Representative Michael Froman, who announced that he would stop both an import ban and a cease-and-desist order that would have required Apple to remove the products from shelves.