Time for sharp competitive intelligence

Wonder how many of us have missed this peace of delightful information like me, though the news is not new but worth knowing about…

Yahoo! Inc. has been  granted the Indian Trademark Office’s first ever sound mark registration.

INTA’s Indian representative, Simran Daryanani, has supported the move, saying: “We are extremely excited to learn that the Indian Trademark Office has recognized an audible iteration of intellectual property and granted it protected status as a sound mark.” He went on to comment:: “India has a thriving economy, and its resourceful and hardworking people are developing new products and services everyday, and we hope that this is only the first in a long list of new protections for Indian brand owners.”

In a statement, INTA acknowledged the commitment and leadership in intellectual property protection of the Indian Trademark Office, and said that the decision indicated that sound marks are now being considered as meaningful as word marks.

Source: WIPR


AeroMechanical Services Ltd. (AMA), is pleased to announce that the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California has granted its motion to dismiss and has dismissed Star Navigation Systems Group’s patent infringement complaint against AMA for a second time. The Court agreed with AMA that Star failed to properly join the two co-owners of the patent – Viraf Kapadia and Hilary Vieira — in the lawsuit.

On April 25, 2008, after having its original complaint dismissed, Star filed an amended complaint against AMA for infringement of US7113852. In the amended complaint, Star added its CEO Mr. Kapadia as a co-plaintiff, and unilaterally named Mr. Vieira an “involuntary plaintiff.” Messrs. Kapadia and Vieira are the co-owners of the ‘852 Patent. AMA moved to dismiss this amended complaint because Mr. Vieira did not qualify as an “involuntary plaintiff.”

The U.S. District Court has given Star until September 5, 2008 to amend its complaint to name Mr. Vieira as a defendant. If Star elects to amend its complaint, Mr. Vieira will have the opportunity to fully participate in the suit. But, Star and Mr. Vieira are currently embroiled in a dispute in the Ontario Superior Court of Justice involving, among other things, the ownership of US7113852.

AMA is the technology leader in aircraft health performance monitoring systems, and holds patents recognizing its innovation in this industry. AMA takes intellectual property matters very seriously.

Patent # –  US7113852

Title – System and method for transportation vehicle monitoring, feedback and control

Filed – July 20, 2001

Abstract – A system provides monitoring/feedback to a transportation vehicle regarding the state of that vehicle based on, at least, information provided by sensors located on or in the transportation vehicle. Monitoring the transportation vehicle provides information about the status of the transportation vehicle and equipment on or in the vehicle. Feedback information is provided to the transportation vehicle based on the information received during monitoring. Additionally, feedback information may be formulated based on additional criteria received from equipment other than the sensors located on or in the vehicle, for example, meteorological systems, geographic location systems, e.g., a radar system, a global positioning system, etc. The information provided by the sensors and the formulated feedback information may be stored in memory on the transportation vehicle as well as at a stable location for archiving and subsequent analysis.

Honeywell International has accused four Japanese firms and their U.S. subsidiaries of infringing its patents.
Honeywell accused the Japanese companies for infringing patents on automotive display and navigation systems.

  • Alpine Electronics
  • Denso Corporation
  • Pioneer Corporation
  • Kenwood Corporation

The four companies all have U.S. subsidiaries that are also named in Honeywell’s request for an investigation.

The commission has been a popular venue for patent infringement suits because, unlike other courts, it can bar products made with infringed technology from importation.

According to Honeywell Aerospace spokeswoman Cathy Gedvilas, “Honeywell continues to invest substantial resources in the design, development and manufacture of navigation systems and equipment . This action will protect against the unauthorized use of our patented technologies”.

Apple agreed to settle a patent dispute with Burst.com, ending two years of litigation. Burst agreed not to sue Apple over current or pending DVR patents.

Under the agreement, Apple will pay Burst.com $10 million and get access to Burst.com’s patent portfolio, with some exceptions. Apple won’t have access to four of Burst.com’s current and pending patents, including three pending patents relating to digital video recorder (DVR) technology. Court costs, expenses and attorney’s fees will reduce the proceeds to Burst.com to $4.6 million.

Burst alleges that Apple infringed four patents for transmission of compressed audio and video files in iTunes, iLife, QuickTime and the iPod.

Apple was asked by Burst in 2004 to license some of its patents, saying they were at the pioneering heart of the iPod. In January 2006, Apple sued Burst.com in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California, seeking a judgment that the Burst.com patents were invalid and not infringed upon. Burst.com countersued in April 2006, alleging that Apple infringed four of its patents.

Bust also won a $60 million financial settlement from Microsoft in 2005 after a patent dispute over the transmission of music and video with its Windows Media Player.

Mumbai, May 18 The Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) has received a United States patent on an innovative process to make sevelamer, a generic polymer that treats toxic excess of phosphate in the body caused by chronic renal failure.

The patent is a culmination of work done by CSIR’s constituent lab in Pune, the National Chemical Laboratory, on a mandate initially given by Mumbai-based drug company USV Ltd.

USV had acquired the patent rights from CSIR last year, following which it further undertook the prosecution of the application.

Dr Kulkarni’s team developed the alternative process that received the patent.

As per the agreement, USV had the first right to license the know-how and acquire the patent rights, and USV exercised this option.

USV had approached NCL in mid-2003 to develop an innovative process to manufacture the polymer. NCL developed the process and CSIR filed the patent application in India, and the US.

NCL’s scientists developed a cost-effective process to manufacture sevelamer, the phosphate-absorbing polymer. The process NCL reduces the manufacturing time and the process chemicals requirements and is easy to scale up. USV has made a one time payment, and no further milestone payments are involved, he said, citing confidentiality for not giving details.

This development is significant as a technologically novel process received a US patent and has been found commercially attractive by a pharma company.

The recent patent success comes against the backdrop of the Centre’s efforts to get more public-funded institutions to file patents and work with the industry to commercialise research efforts.

With 128 patents in 2006-2007, the CSIR accounts for about 47 per cent of the total US patents granted to Indians, excluding non-resident Indians and foreign assignees, said Mr R.K. Gupta, Head of CSIR’s IP Management Division.

Final patent

The final patent on the CSIR-developed innovative polymer will be issued by the US Patent Office in approximately four months, said Pharmaceutical Patent Attorneys, LLC, the New Jersey-based firm who prosecuted the patent for its Indian client.

Vonage has agreed to settle partially on a patent suit with Verizon after the company was faced with possible interruption of its service. Verizon alleges that Vonage is infringing on seven of its patents on voice-over-IP technologies. A joint statement read succinctly “The parties are pleased to have resolved this matter.”

In March of this year, a jury found that Vonage is infringing on three of the seven patents, awarding Verizon with $58 million in damages. The judge issued an injunction which was stayed pending an appeal. Nevertheless in September, the U.S. Court of Appeals upheld the earlier court decision. Vonage then filed a petition for a rehearing.

If Vonage wins a rehearing on either the ‘574 or ‘711 patent, or if the injunction is vacated as to the ‘574 or ‘711 patent, Vonage will have to pay Verizon $80 million. If Vonage does not win a rehearing on either the ‘574 or ‘711 patent, or if the stay is lifted reinstating the injunction, Vonage will pay Verizon $117.5 million.

Things got more interesting as AT&T filed a lawsuit against Vonage on October 17 for a patent on connecting a traditional telephone to the Internet. The suit was filed after two years of unsuccessful negotiations, however Vonage said they would resolve the matter with AT&T to prevent court proceedings.

Red Hat Inc. and Novell Inc. are being sued by IP Innovation LLC. and Technology Licensing Corp. for patent infringement. The court filing claims that Novell and Red Hat infringed on the plaintiff’s patent for User Interface with Multiple Workspaces for Sharing Display System Objects as well as two other similar patents. This is the first patent infringement lawsuit involving Linux.

According to the lawsuit filed with the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Texas, Novell and Red Hat are accused of infringing on the patents by selling the Red Hat Linux system, the Novell SUSE Linux Enterprise Desktop, and the Novell SUSE Linux Enterprise Server. IP Innovation LLC. and Technology Licensing Corp. further further contend that the defendants “deliberately and willfully” infringed on the patents, stating that the defendants were previously notified of the infringement.

IP Innovation LLC. and Technology Licensing Corp. are seeking an injunction from the District Court plus damages including other relief that the court might find proper. Novell withheld comment until their attorneys could further review the court filing.
Red Hat Inc and Novell Inc are accused of violating three patents.

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