Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Samsung, Pragmatus End Litigation over Tracking System

Case Filed: Oct 10, 2013

Case Closed: Jun 2014

Court: Delaware District Court

Judge: Leonard P. Stark

Case Summary:
Pragmatus, a licensing company based in Alexandria, Virginia, asserted two US patents on mobile devices that can be tracked by GPS signals. The case was filed against Samsung, a South Korean company headquartered in Samsung Town, Seoul.

Patents –in-Suit:
The patents in the suit included US8149124 and US8466795 both reading ‘Personal security and tracking system’ issued duly by USPTO on Apr 12, 2012 and Jun 18, 2013, respectively. The patents are set to expire[i] by Jan 21, 2017 and are currently assigned[ii] to Pragmatus (source: MaxVal’s Assignment Database).

The '124 patent describes a method for tracking a mobile device through GPS signals, while the '795 patent discloses a cellular device used in housing components including a speaker, microphone or battery.

As in Complaint:
The complaint stated that Samsung directly infringed the patents by making, using, offering for sale, selling and/or practicing the inventions covered by the claims of the '124 and ‘795 patents by providing the Samsung Galaxy S IV smartphone and indirectly infringed by encouraging or aiding third parties (e.g., Samsung’s users) to use the smartphone in a way that infringes the '124 and ‘795 patents.

According to the complaint, Samsung had  prior knowledge of the '124 and the '795 patents by virtue of letters sent by Pragmatus to Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd., Samsung Electronics America, Inc. and Samsung Telecommunications America, thus stating the infringement was willful.

Pragmatus requested judgment declaring that the patents-in-suit are valid and enforceable. Additionally, demanded damages adequate to compensate Pragmatus for Samsung’s infringement including enhanced damages, as a result of willful infringement.

Case Trial:
Initially, defendants filed a motion to stay the case due to a pending final disposition of a related investigation in U.S. International Trade Commission (ITC), considering which the court granted the stay.  The proceedings came to end when plaintiff filed a stipulation of dismissal with court ordering the case dismissed without prejudice with each party to bear its own costs.

See 1:13-cv-01683 for more details. To get alerts on cases filed/closed, subscribe to our Litigation Alerts.

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[i] Expected expiration date. Patent Term Estimator is a free web-based tool that automatically calculates patent terms and expiration dates for U.S. utility patents.
[ii] MaxVal offers Patent Assignment Alert service where subscribers receive email alerts when assignments relating to target applications, patents or entities of interest are recorded.

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