Smart Thermostat Campaign Sees Third Round of Litigation, Including Another ITC Complaint

March 7, 2021

In late February 2021, EcoFactor, Inc. filed a second complaint before the International Trade Commission (ITC) naming as respondents in the proposed investigation Alphabet (Google), Carrier Global, ecobee, Emerson Electric, Honeywell, Johnson Controls, Resideo Technologies, and Siemens (337-TA-1258). Infringement of five patents is alleged, with EcoFactor’s sights set on the provision of certain smart thermostats, prompting five proposed respondents—Carrier (1:21-cv-00328), ecobee (1:21-cv-00323), and Emerson Electric (1:21-cv-00317) in the District of Delaware; Google (3:21-cv-01468) and Resideo Technologies (3:21-cv-01496), in the Northern District of California—to file subsequent declaratory judgment actions over the same set of patents, perhaps to avoid EcoFactor filing yet more litigation in either the District of Massachusetts, where this metastasizing campaign started in late 2019, or the Western District of Texas, where it spread in early 2020.

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