Wireless

by Mike Masnick




There Goes Prepaid Wireless Programs

from the sorry-'bout-that dept

Last month a judge upheld a patent ruling against BCGI for helping mobile operators offer prepaid wireless solutions. Yes, that's right. Having someone pay you before you give them mobile phone service is patented. Now, the judge has increased the fine and issued an injunction that means many carriers offering BCGI's prepaid wireless offerings will have to stop. Yet another example of obvious patents are being used by a company that doesn't offer anything to stop a company that actually did the innovation and brought something to market.

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  • identicon
    Bob3000, 19 Oct 2005 @ 4:27am

    This

    Just. Fucking. Brutal.

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

  • identicon
    ben dover, 19 Oct 2005 @ 5:53am

    out of control court room antics

    I am patenting whiping your ass after you shit.
    Seriously, the cell phone companies should just call
    it post donation usage plans or something "new" like that.

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

  • identicon
    Jesse McNelis, 19 Oct 2005 @ 7:16am

    ummm...surely all forms of rental would be prior a

    ummm...surely all forms of rental would be prior art?
    such as:
    gas, electric, water supply services
    jukeboxes
    appliance rental
    pay-as-you-go ADSL or dialup internet access.

    Lots of idiots in that patent department.

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

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 19 Oct 2005 @ 7:58pm

    Can we please have better informed Judges?

    I was told that judges are often ignorant.
    A patent is meant to be "something new and novel
    to one skilled in the art".
    Unfortunately Judges are not often "skilled in the art".
    and so accept as novel what is obviously not!
    The only good thing is:

    "Ignorance is Curable
    Stupidity is Forever!"

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

    • identicon
      david, 22 Oct 2005 @ 9:14pm

      Re: Can we please have better informed Judges?

      Obviously none of you have read the patent or understand the case - try getting the facts before you forumlate your opinions.
      The patent represents a particular set of processes which were unique and novel at the time. BCGI is using those processes to implement prepaid wireless. No one forced BCGI to use this approach, no one prevented them from researching patents before they built a business on it, and no one forced them to refuse to settle.
      So the company that bought the patent has four people and doesn't implement the technology. What does that have to do with anything? We don't force the inventor of an idea to be the implementor. License agreements let one party invent and another implement.
      If BCGI and their customers don't want to pay the license fee, they can put their prepaid customers on a postpaid plan and take the credit risk, or they can invent a different way to implement prepaid. It's their own poor planning and arrogance that have brought them to this point.

      -dfj

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


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