Glocom, Inc. subsidiary SIPCO LLC has filed suit in the Eastern District of Texas against CommScope (Arris, Ruckus Wireless) (5:20-cv-00168) over the provision of Internet of Things (IoT) access points and gateways that use the ZigBee mesh networking standard as well as wireless access points that can send emergency notifications over cellular networks. The plaintiff asserts five patents in the complaint, managing to add two new ones to the group of now 30-plus patents-in-suit, in one of the longest-running campaigns, alive since 2005, one of those new patents recently sourced from Pantech.
SIPCO LLC has added an April case against HP Enterprise (Aruba Networks) (1:20-cv-00537) to the two suits that it filed in March 2020, one against each of D-Link (8:20-cv-00595) and TP-Link (8:20-cv-00543). Aruba Networks is accused of infringing multiple patents through the provision of various networking products (e.g., access points,gateways, and mesh networking solutions) that use the Bluetooth 5 or Zigbee standards; D-Link and TP-Link, of infringing overlapping sets of patents through the provision of smart home routers, controllers, and sensors that use the Z-Wave or ZigBee mesh networking standards. This campaign has been running continuously since 2005, albeit with a change of ownership in the beginning of 2018.
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The Federal Circuit has partially reversed and remanded a ruling by the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) that a device monitoring patent asserted by SIPCO LLC was eligible for covered business method (CBM) review, which led to a January 2018 final decision cancelling claims from the patent under Alice and Section 103. Ruling on September 25, a Federal Circuit majority held that the Board had relied upon an improper claim construction for its determination that the patent does not fall within an exception excluding patents that “solve . . . a technical problem using a technical solution” from CBM review (2018-1635). Inventor-controlled SIPCO has seen multiple changes in corporate ownership since the 2005 launch of its litigation campaign, including the publicly announced 2012 acquisition of part ownership stakes by General Electric and MPEG LA. A more recent change in ownership came with less fanfare: In early 2018, SIPCO disclosed in public filings that it is now wholly owned by Glocom, Inc., a Maryland company apparently led by the CEO of Korean patent monetization firm Ideahub, Inc., the latter of which has touted an investment in SIPCO. Ideahub has also just launched a push into US courts in its own right, cofiling litigation with new NPE plaintiff Helios Streaming, LLC.
SIPCO LLC, a Georgia-based NPE co-founded by inventor T. David Petite, has added Kapsch TrafficCom and its subsidiary Streetline (1:16-cv-00830) to its mesh networking campaign. Along with related co-plaintiff IP Co., LLC (d/b/a IntusIQ), SIPCO accuses the two companies of infringing ten patents (6,249,516; 6,437,692; 6,914,893; 7,103,511; 7,468,661; 7,697,492; 8,223,010; 8,233,471; 8,625,496; 8,908,842) generally related to monitoring and controlling electronic devices. The defendants are alleged to infringe the patents-in-suit through the use of Streetline’s smart parking monitoring hardware in conjunction with Kapsch’s parking management software and services.