The Mountain View, Calif., company, in conjunction with the others, submitted its comments -- more like grave concerns -- on the practice in a note to the Federal Trade Commission and the Department of Justice. The companies assert that patent transfers to patent assertion entities (PAEs), aka patent trolls, undermine patent peace, and Google et al are pushing the government … Read more
Fed up with patent trolls, Rackspace is going on the offensive.
After successfully defending itself from a patent infringement lawsuit over Linux, the Texas-based cloud infrastructure service provider says it filed a lawsuit today against Parallel Iron and IP Nav, a patent assertion entity (PAE) that Rackspace calls "the most notorious patent troll in America."
Commonly referred to as patent trolls, PAEs are created to extract licensing fees from other companies rather than make products based on the patents.
In a blog post today, Rackspace said Parallel Iron sued it and 11 other defendants in Delaware last week … Read more
In a legal victory for Google and Samsung, a German court has reportedly invalidated all patent claims related to Apple's "slide to unlock" user interface.
Today's ruling by Bundespatentgericht, Germany's federal patent court, is a setback for Apple, which has pressed the patent against Google's Motorola and Samsung in courts across Europe in attempts to secure injunctions preventing the companies' devices from being sold. However, the decision is appealable, according to Foss Patents blogger Florian Mueller, a paid consultant for several tech companies who was first to report on today's ruling.
The ruling, … Read more
Despite Apple CEO Tim Cook having knocked the idea of a convertible MacBook-iPad hybrid device, the company has filed a patent application for just that. The proposed patent, titled "Wireless display for electronic devices," was published by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office today.
The application describes a computer display that is removable from its base -- basically a convertible laptop. But, what's different about this idea from other convertibles made by other companies is that it has wireless display technology. That means the device could be charged wirelessly.
Here's how Apple describes it in … Read more
Apple today said that a patent it successfully used against Samsung in its 2011 U.S. lawsuit is not dead yet. That's despite a recent decision by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office decision to render it invalid.
In a filing this afternoon, one of Apple's top attorneys noted that the company still has a chance to fight the decision by filing for an appeal with the USPTO, or -- if that fails -- by taking it to the courts.
"A 'final' office action does not signal the end of reexamination at the USPTO, much less … Read more
Waiting on hold may not be so dull if a newly patented Apple technology ever ends up a reality.
Granted to Apple today by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, a patent called "Communications system that provides user-selectable data when user is on-hold" envisions a system for showing useful and interesting information to mobile phone callers waiting on hold.
The information being displayed would be adaptive and contextual, according to the patent, meaning it would vary depending on the caller, the caller's location, the date and time, and other items. As one example, the caller might … Read more
The damages Samsung owes Apple in their landmark patent lawsuit could be reduced even further after a recent U.S. Patent and Trademark Office decision.
The USPTO issued a First Office Action last October that tentatively rejected all claims of Apple's '381 patent after a federal jury had deemed that it was valid and that Samsung had infringed on it. As part of its re-examination of the patent, the USPTO issued a Final Office Action, according to a Samsung filing late today with the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California (see below).
Apple accused more … Read more
No stranger to intellectual property litigation, Microsoft today launched a Web tool that lets anyone search its entire portfolio of 40,785 patents.
The idea, according to the software giant's general counsel, Brad Smith, is to create greater transparency, giving those who might otherwise illegally use Microsoft's patents without permission a way to find what intellectual property Microsoft owns.
"One of the fundamental objectives of the patent system is to provide notice regarding inventions -- not only the nature of what has been invented but who owns the patent," Smith wrote in a blog post.
What'… Read more
Google today is "taking a stand on open source and patents," vowing not to sue anyone on specified patents unless first attacked.
The company, which today announced its Open Patent Non-Assertion Pledge, said to start with, it has identified 10 patents related to MapReduce, a model for processing large data sets. It has pledged not to sue any user, distributor, or developer of open-source software based on patents related to MapReduce.
Duane Valz, Google senior patent counsel, said in a blog post that Google wants to ensure open source software remains open:
"At Google we believe that … Read more
Apple is now squaring off against another legal adversary in China.
The iPhone maker appeared today at a Shanghai court hearing for a case in which it's accused of copying the voice-recognition software used for Siri, AFP reported.
Shanghai-based Zhizhen Network Technology has charged Apple with patent infringement, claiming that it holds the rights to the software in question.
Zhizhen says it patented its "Xiao i Robot" software, which is a "type of instant messaging chat bot system," back in 2004. Siri was developed in 2007. Apple bought the technology in 2010 and unveiled it … Read more