Legal Issues

by Carlo Longino

First Crack Appears In RIM's Workaround

With d-day approaching for RIM in its patent case with NTP, people are taking a closer look at the workaround after RIM released the details last week. The workaround entails an upgrade for corporate servers, as well as a patch for individual devices -- but carriers say some older devices don't have enough memory to install the workaround. Granted, these are pretty old devices, but still could represent a problem and a cost for RIM and its carrier partners. Despite RIM's insistence that the workaround is viable, there's plenty of concern about it among its user base. While this first setback may be very minor, it won't help assuage those concerns. Derek adds: Strange that the first carrier quoted in the linked article is Canada's TELUS. Why is TELUS testing the workaround? The NTP lawsuit only threatens Blackberry service in the USA. Also, today the USPTO office has issued a final rejection on at least one NTP patent. This is not the "non-final action" rejections that we've seen so far, but a final rejection. Of course, 'final' is a flexible word at the USPTO, and NTP can appeal the decision - but for now, that particular patent isn't valid.

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