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Abandoned Patents

With the passage of time, the value of the utilization of patents will be increased but some patents will lose their original value and may not need to be kept anymore. On the other hand, although annual fees have become remarkably high over the past several years, annual fees from the tenth year are the same due to a revision of the patent law. However, since the number of patents registered is increasing each year, it is only natural that the accumulating patent rights will also increase correspondingly. As a result, annual fees are continuing to increase.

Thus, it is desirable that patent rights be evaluated and reviewed on a regular basis, for example, every three years, so that those rights that are no longer required to be maintained can be abandoned to reduce expenses. As patent rights are automatically revoked if the annual maintenance fees are not paid, enterprises need not undertake any special transactions to dispose of them.

However, patent rights, once revoked, cannot be recovered except during the period for late payments. Therefore, enterprises should be careful when making decisions to abandon patents by setting up, for instance, in-house standards. The basic concept of the standard of the patent rights which should be continuously maintained and those which may be abandoned are given below.

Abandoning patent rights
Patents which could be disposed of are:

  • Patents which are not used and have no prospects for the future.
  • Patents which have lost their value due to the development of alternative technology, and would not bring any disadvantages to the enterprise even if they were used by others.
  • Patents which are deemed to have lost any prospects of earning profits through licensing or assignment.

Is Microsoft Aging?

Recently, U.S. state of Mississippi settled an antitrust suit with Microsoft Corp for $100 million on Thursday and said businesses, individuals, schools and local government were eligible for a share of the money. Apart from antitrust suit Microsoft was also ordered to pay $521 million to Eolas Technologies, $200 million to a Canadian software firm i4i Ltd and much more to many more companies for patent infringment and offcourse these are all lost battles by Microsoft. Here is the current list of all patent under litigation.

  • US5369702 – TECSEC Incorporated – Distributed cryptographic object method
  • US6374289 – Backweb Technologies, Ltd. – Distributed client-based data caching system
  • US6542814 – Horizon Navigation, Inc. – Methods and apparatus for dynamic point of interest display
  • US6195662 – Juxtacomm Technologies Inc. – System for transforming and exchanging data between distributed heterogeneous computer systems
  • US6405368 – Method for separate compilation of templates
  • US7496854 – Arendi Holding Limited – Method, system and computer readable medium for addressing handling from a computer program
  • US6405368 – Method for separate compilation of templates
  • US7363592 – Tool group manipulations

Patent Lawsuit a Safe Route to Revenue Generation During Recession

The objective and target of any organization is growth at 45 degree on x & Y axis through best products, best services etc… with latest innovations. Ever since recession has hit the western market the economy and jobs are melting like never before, chapter 11 filing cases are increasing. After all to run an organization revenue has to be generated. As newspapers across North America and the globe continue to flood with stories of economic downturn and businesses fighting to survive, organizations this month are placing a renewed focus on innovation and revenue generation.

Revenue generation through patent lawsuits is the new trend. 35 patent lawsuits have been filed just in 5 plus month time during 2009, wonder how many more are there. Surely first half of 2009 is not good for Google in terms of lawsuits, total 14 lawsuit are been battled.

Lawsuit filing cases of 2009:

  1. Aloft Media, LLC v. Yahoo! Inc. et al
  2. Performance Pricing, Inc. v. Google Inc. et al
  3. Leader Technologies Inc. v. Facebook Inc.
  4. Actus, LLC v. Bank of America Corp. et al
  5. Paid Search Engine Tools, LLC v. Google, Inc. et al
  6. ESN LLC v. Cisco Systems, Inc. et al
  7. Heartland Recreational Vehicles LLC v. Forest River Inc
  8. Software Rights Archive, LLC v. Google Inc. et al
  9. Northeastern University et al v. Google, Inc.,
  10. Polaris IP, LLC v. Google Inc. et al
  11. Function Media, L.L.C. v. Google, Inc. et al
  12. Aloft Media, LLC v. Google, Inc.
  13. GraphOn Corporation v. Google Inc.
  14. Google, Inc. v. EMSAT Advanced Geo-Location Technology, LLC et al
  15. Picsel (Research) Ltd. et al v. Apple Inc.
  16. Web Tracking Solutions, Inc. et al v. Google, Inc.
  17. Association For Molecular Pathology et al v. United States Patent and Trademark Office et al
  18. Cygnus Systems, Inc. v. Microsoft Corporation, et al
  19. Google Inc. et al v. Egger et al
  20. Certicom Corporation et al v. Sony Corporation et al
  21. Klausner Technologies Inc v. Verizon Wireless et al
  22. Clark v. The Walt Disney Company et al
  23. HYPERPHRASE TECHNOLOGIES, LLC v. GOOGLE INC.
  24. BabyAge..com, Inc. v. Leachco, Inc.
  25. IP Innovation LLC et al v. Google, Inc.
  26. Elan Microelectronics Corporation v. Apple, Inc.
  27. Bid for Position, LLC v. AOL, LLC et al
  28. Soilworks LLC v Midwest Industrial Supply Inc
  29. Priest et al v Google Inc.
  30. 21 srl v. Apple Inc. et al
  31. PACid Group, LLC v. Apple Inc. et al
  32. Accolade Systems LLC v. Micron Technology Inc et al
  33. Affinity Labs of Texas, LLC v. Apple, Inc.
  34. Clear With Computers, LLC v. Bassett Furniture Industries, Inc. et al
  35. Motorola Inc v. Research In Motion Limited et al

Bilski Effect on various Technology Patents

Finally the Bilski case has gone to US Supreme Court. “Not since 1981 has the Supreme Court undertaken to spell out the kinds of inventions that are eligible for patent rights — that is, the right to produce or use an invented device or process, or to license it to others for royalties. Much has changed since the Court’s decision in Diamond v. Diehr in 1981, not least the digital revolution.”

A study was conducted on the effect of Biliski in various technology patents by an IP, technology and market research company called Dolcera.
Detailed report and statistics have been published at Dolcera Public Reports

The below chart depicts the effect of Biliski on various technology domains.

Bilski

U.S. District Court Grants AeroMechanical Services’ Motion to Dismiss In Patent Infringement Complaint

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 asks panel to take up patent suit

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 Settles iPod Patent with Burst

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.

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