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Another Apparent Oso IP Affiliate Initiates New Campaign, This One Targeting Samsung’s Chatbot
April 6, 2019
E-Commerce and Software, Mobile Communications and Devices, New Patent Litigation
Gummarus, LLC identifies as the accused product in its Eastern District of Texas suit (4:19-cv-00251) the Samsung Chatbot, an automated, browser-based technical support assistant that operates through instant messaging-style text chat, as used within a browser (like Google Chrome) running on a “personal computing device (e.g., a desktop computer, laptop computer, smartphone, tablet computer, etc.)”. At issue is a feature that allows the user to select a device category (e.g., “Mobile” or “TVs & Home”) and then a specific device for support (e.g., the Galaxy Note 9) by clicking an image from each of two successive series of images, which are presented in response to the user’s initial text requests.
ITC Institutes Investigation as to Amazon, Apple, and Verizon in Cloud Computing Campaign
April 6, 2019
Networking, Patent Litigation Feature
Last week, the International Trade Commission (ITC) instituted an investigation in response to a February complaint that Irish NPE Data Scape Limited filed, together with New York provider of LED ticker displays C-Scape Consulting Corp., against Amazon, Apple, and Verizon (337-TA-1150). Data Scape asserts three patents—generally related to storing and syncing data files in a distributed computing environment—in its ITC complaint that are already at issue in district court cases in the campaign, which the NPE began in Germany in 2017. In addition to the three ITC respondents, the list of defendants in Data Scape’s campaign includes Barracuda Networks, Box, Citrix, Dell, Dropbox, F5 Networks, Fujitsu, Pandora, SpotifyTeradata, and Western Digital. Data Scape seeks to satisfy the domestic industry requirement based on the activities of two identified licensees of the patents asserted: iCandy and Oracle.
IP Edge Tags More Companies over Conferencing and Online Meeting Systems
April 6, 2019
Media Content and Distribution, Networking, New Patent Litigation
One of the six campaigns launched by Texas monetization firm IP Edge LLC over a former Siemens patent has now already seen a second round of suits filed. Last week Wave Linx LLC hit Avaya (1:19-cv-00607), Dialpad (1:19-cv-00608), and Polycom (1:19-cv-00609) over the provision of online meeting systems—Avaya’s Equinox Meetings Online, UberConference by Dialpad, and Polycom’s RealPresence Meetings, respectively—that provide notifications when a user enters or exits a meeting. The sole patent asserted in this campaign broadly concerns transmitting notifications from the telephone system to a browser using “networking protocols”.
Second New Campaign Tags Mobile Devices of Both LG Electronics and Samsung for Inclusion of Google Product
April 4, 2019
E-Commerce and Software, Mobile Communications and Devices, New Patent Litigation
Boccone, LLC, an entity formed in Delaware last July, has also filed suit in the Eastern District of Texas against LG Electronics (4:19-cv-00244) and Samsung (4:19-cv-00243) over the provision of smartphones and tablets with a product from Alphabet (Google) already installed, this time Google Photos. Both complaints assert the same three patents, which generally pertain to a system that uses facial recognition to identify photos with certain faces, identify potential recipients for the digital sharing of those photos, and allow the sharing of one or more of those photos.
More Patents Naming Prolific Inventor Flow to Litigating NPEs
April 3, 2019
Patent Market, Patent Watch
Jenam Tech, LLC and Gummarus, LLC recently kicked off litigation campaigns over patents that the two affiliates of California monetization firm Oso IP, LLC received from Sitting Man LLC, a Delaware entity created by the patents’ sole named inventor to hold the assets. Those plaintiffs, however, are not the first to litigate the patents of Robert Paul Morris—and assignment records made public by the USPTO suggest that they are not likely to be the last.
Despite an Apparent Working Capital Deficiency, Quest Patent Research Corporation Receives Yet Another Portfolio from IV
April 3, 2019
Patent Market, Patent Watch
March saw Quest Patent Research Corporation (QPRC) acquire yet another portfolio from Intellectual Ventures LLC (IV), this one comprising assets developed by BAE Systems, Conexant, Cypress Semiconductor, Honeywell, Philips, MagnaChip, STMicro, or UMC, among others. Meanwhile, with multiple ongoing litigation campaigns asserting patents received from IV, including at least two in which IV holds a financial stake, QPRC—which on April 1 notified the SEC that it was unable to file its 10-K due to a “lack of resources”—appears to be running out of capital.
Recently Resuscitated E-Commerce Campaign, with Apparent Ties to Equitable IP, Hits Etsy
April 3, 2019
E-Commerce and Software, New Patent Litigation
Consolidated Transaction Processing LLC (CTP) has added a case against Etsy (1:19-cv-00591) to the suits that it filed in mid-March against Amazon, eBay, Overstock.com, and Wal-Mart. All five cases were filed in Delaware, asserting the same five e-commerce patents, with infringement allegations focused on common features within e-commerce platforms, as well as features that distinguish between multiple sellers for a given item and that allow sellers to choose from multiple payment processors. In the first case in CTP’s campaign, filed in the District of Nevada in July 2016, Jet.com (subsequently acquired by Wal-Mart) filed an early motion to dismiss under Alice, characterizing three of the patents-in-suit as patent-ineligibly directed to the abstract idea of catalog sales and the other two, to the abstract idea of targeting advertisements based on customer location.
Altaba Board Approves Plan for Liquidation and Dissolution
April 2, 2019
Patent Market, Patent Watch
Altaba Inc., the investment management company formerly known as Yahoo, announced on April 2 that its board has approved a plan for its liquidation and dissolution. If that plan is also approved by the company’s stockholders, Altaba will dispose of all its remaining shares in Alibaba and its equity interests in Excalibur IP, LLC—the entity created to hold a portfolio of IP assets after Verizon acquired Yahoo’s core operating business in 2017 (taking only a license to the IP left behind).
Irish NPE Takes Aim at OLED Display Panels
April 1, 2019
Consumer Electronics and PCs, New Patent Litigation
Solas OLED Limited, an NPE formed in Ireland in March 2016, has filed suit against LG Display, LG Electronics (LGE), and Sony (6:19-cv-00236), targeting OLED (“organic light-emitting diode”) display panels made by LG Display and incorporated into televisions made by LGE and Sony. A single patent, received from the University of Stuttgart and generally related to a “driving circuit” for “image points” on an OLED screen, is asserted in the complaint. An affiliate of Data Scape Limited, another Irish NPE with an ongoing litigation campaign, touts a worldwide portfolio of patents purportedly covering “all critical areas of OLED structures, display design/architecture, and driver circuitry”.
New Plaintiff, a Likely Family Affair, Files Suit over “Adaptive Communications” Patents
April 1, 2019
E-Commerce and Software, Mobile Communications and Devices, New Patent Litigation
Recently formed SRK Technology LLC has filed its first lawsuit, accusing Snap (2:19-cv-02515) of infringing two related patents broadly directed to selecting, on a “communication device”, a recording “communication mode” based on the duration for which a certain user “interface element” of an application is activated. SRK Technology’s infringement allegations take aim at Snap’s mobile app, targeting its camera interface feature where a tap of the record button captures a photo snap while a hold of the button records a video snap.
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