Patent Office Rejects Important NTP Patent... A Day Late

from the oh-well,-next-time dept

Just a day after a judge in the NTP-RIM patent fight said that he would not wait for the US Patent Office to complete a review of NTP's patents, that same Patent Office announced a "non-final" ruling on one of the NTP patents, suggesting that the original patent might not be valid. If you've been keeping score, this is just the latest in a long line. Each of the NTP patent the Patent Office has reviewed has come back with serious questions about their validity. In this case, it's the second time this patent has been reviewed. While NTP still gets to respond, the USPTO made it clear that it's extremely unlikely that they'll change their mind. This is important, since RIM was only found guilty of infringing on two patents -- and this is one of them. The oddest part about this, however, is that the reason for finding the patent invalid was that the USPTO reviewed some prior art submitted by NTP's own lawyers -- who still claim that they will prevail in the end. It's not at all clear why they submitted the evidence that seems to discredit their own patents. Either way, the fact that the USPTO appears to have serious doubts as to whether or not these patents are valid seem like a pretty damn good reason for the court not to force RIM to pay out nearly a billion dollars. What happens if the patents are all eventually completely rejected? Does RIM get its money back?


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  1.  
    identicon
    Mousky, Dec 1st, 2005 @ 5:22pm

    No Subject Given

    "What happens if the patents are all eventually completely rejected? Does RIM get its money back?"

    RIM sues NTP. The only people winning here are the lawyers.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  2.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Dec 1st, 2005 @ 6:09pm

    No Subject Given

    And those competing with RIM.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  3.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Dec 1st, 2005 @ 6:40pm

    No Subject Given

    Well the reason that NTP's lawyers submitted that prior art may be because companies seeking a patent are required to also submit a list of prior art that the patent may rely upon or that is similar to the current patent. It is usually all listed on the first page of the patent once it is granted. If they purposely exclude some relevant prior art, then the patent could be invalidated when they try to sue somebody. I'm not completely positive about all of that, but I pretty sure it's correct.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  4.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Dec 2nd, 2005 @ 12:38am

    Re: No Subject Given

    yep

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  5.  
    identicon
    James F, Dec 2nd, 2005 @ 11:39am

    RIM, NTPpatents & settlement

    FYI, the WSJ quoted sources as saying the original $450M settelement was never signed b/c RIM wanted a clause in it saying they would get their money back if the NTP patents were later found invalid. NTP said no, so they're still at it. Will be very interesting to hear if there is a settlement, will it include a provision allowing RIM a refund if patents invalidated post-settlement.

    Finally, has anyone heard re. the RIM work-around? I hear they are on the verge of deploying a solution whgich doesn't infringe...

     

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  6.  
    identicon
    dude, Dec 2nd, 2005 @ 12:09pm

    link to the article, please ?

    Where did you find about this clause ?
    A link to the article, if possible, please ?
    I would NEVER EVER sign such a clause for anything
    at all, much less for 450mil.
    It may take PTO 10 years to arrive to the final
    conclusion, counting all the appeals...
    The initial rejection of a patent by PTO is no
    big deal, happens all the time.
    Eolas patent was also initially rejected on re-examination, but finally has passed PTO scrutiny.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  7.  
    icon
    Mike (profile), Dec 2nd, 2005 @ 12:16pm

    Re: link to the article, please ?

    The initial rejection of a patent by PTO is no
    big deal, happens all the time.


    Yeah, but this isn't an *initial* rejection. This is the second rejection of that patent, and the USPTO says it's very unlikely that any response from NTP will change that decision.

    So, yes, it IS a big deal.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  8.  
    identicon
    dude, Dec 2nd, 2005 @ 12:27pm

    Re: link to the article, please ?

    Ok, it may be a big deal.
    But, from my personal (and rather frustrating) experience with USPTO, I can only say for sure:
    never say 'no' until it's actually over.
    PTO is a mess, they need some serious quality reforms indeed...
    Though in a high profile case like this they's better deploy their best resources and expedite proceedings...

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  9.  
    identicon
    Suze, Dec 11th, 2005 @ 8:55pm

    BlackBerry Work-Around Finally Revealed

    RIM’s new “Push-a-Link” Push-Pull configuration likely will make NTP nervous and BB users breathe a little easier.... BlackBerry Work-Around Revealed @ http://www.rimblackberryntp.blogspot.com/

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  10.  
    identicon
    Mark V, Dec 12th, 2005 @ 11:49am

    BB "Push a link" workaround

    I found the following info from this RIM pdf. Could this be what they are doing? "Server side PUSH" "Push a link to the BlackBerry main screen" "push web content and links to users handhelds • Alert users of new information" “Message Push” • Push a message to the user’s inbox that automatically launches the browser to a specified page (cached or not)" http://epic.ca/TechnologyDay/April2005/Presentations/RIM%20-%20Gordon%20Grant.pdf

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]


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