No One Ever Would Have Planned To Put Voice, Video And Data On A Single Network Without A Patent

from the who-would-have-thought-of-that? dept

Another day, another incredibly broad and obvious patent claim. Broadband Reports points us to a patent awarded to Cisco earlier this year for a System and method for providing integrated voice, video and data to customer premises over a single network. Yes, that sounds like the commonly accepted definition of the “triple play,” which until now no one had suggested was such a unique and non-obvious concept that it deserved a patent. Now, you might say that they could be explaining a very specific and non-obvious way of accomplishing this, but as the folks at Light Reading point out, the actual patent seems broadly worded to cover just about all triple play deployments. Once again, this highlights the need for an “obviousness” test, rather than just a prior art test. It may be true that there were no triple play offerings available in 2000, when the patent was filed, but that doesn’t mean people weren’t thinking about it. In fact, the bottleneck wasn’t that people didn’t know how to offer voice, video and data over a single network, but that the bandwidth just wasn’t available yet.

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Comments on “No One Ever Would Have Planned To Put Voice, Video And Data On A Single Network Without A Patent”

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BigEd says:

It all end here.

So, does that mean that if I use Skype to talk to someone, watch a video on MyTube and download some data from Microsoft that Cisco is gonna sue me for violating their patent. Next thing ya know will be Cisco opening a bank so we can all deposit our work checks straight into our account there so pay for out networking/internet use.

Cleverboy (user link) says:

Re: Self Defense

“In the wild-wild-west of patent wars Cisco probably felt the need to patent the obvious just to keep anyone else from doing it and then sueing them.”

Well, here’s hoping Cisco, like Microsoft did earlier with many of its Linux/OS related patents, will pledge not to sue offensively over these. Who knows. One can hope.

Anonymous Coward says:

Not exactly on point, but does it matter if someone was thinking about it? Not considering the alleged absurdity of this particular patent, I don’t think it matters how much people were thinking about something, only if they actually accomplished it. I don’t believe you can deny a patent because someone else thought of an idea they never put into action. I know, not the point of your rant about, again, patents, but I’m just saying…

ehrichweiss says:

I'll be the first to claim prior art on this one..

10 years ago a friend and I discussed a venture involving teleconferencing where we did EXACTLY the idea involved and I know we weren’t the first since someone had already created most of the software before us. And as someone else said “it’s all data”…and that was our attitude about the thing as well so I call shenanigans.

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