PTAB Ruling Against ContentGuard Is Overturned, Board Ordered to Revisit Patent’s CBM Determination

  • July 13, 2018

The Federal Circuit has reversed a Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) ruling that cancelled three claims from a ContentGuard Holdings, Inc. digital rights management (DRM) patent, holding that the PTAB had incorrectly determined that the challenged patent qualified for covered business method (CBM) review. In a July 11 opinion, the court held for two CBM reviews filed by Apple and Google (CBM2015-00040, CBM2015-00160) that the Board had erred by ruling that the patent was a CBM patent because the claimed technology was “incidental to” or “complimentary to” a financial activity, a standard that the Federal Circuit had since rejected as overly broad in Unwired Planet v. Google.

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