Friday, July 18, 2014

Linex Appeals for New Trial in Wireless Patent Suit against HP, Apple and Others

Case Filed: Jul 15, 2014
Origin Case: 4:13-cv-00159
Case Summary:
Linex Technologies, a Florida-based developer of 3G/4G/LTE+ systems architecture and patent licensing company has filed an appeal in the Federal Circuit concerning district court’s judgment invalidating Linex’s patent claims. The suit was filed in Jan, 2013 against Delaware corporations namely HP, Aruba Networks, Meru Networks and Ruckus Wireless, and Apple, a California corporation. The suit was originally filed in Delaware District Court and later transferred to California Northern District Court. The patents-in-suit relate to the field of wireless data transmission and spread spectrum technology.
The suit revolves around the patents:

  • US6757322 entitled ‘Space diversity and coding, spread-spectrum antenna and method,’ issued on Jun 29, 2004
  • RE42219 entitled ‘Multiple-input multiple-output (MIMO) spread spectrum system and method,’ issued on Mar 15, 2011

Both the patents expire[i] on Nov 24, 2018 and are currently assigned[ii] to Linex (source: MaxVal’s Assignment Database).The ‘322 and ‘219 patents relate to antennas and more particularly to reduce the effects of shadowing from a multipath environment using space diversity and coding.
As in Complaint:
The suit alleged that defendants’ products operate using certain wireless communication methods that operate in a “multiple input, multiple output” (“MIMO”) mode over a wireless local area network, as defined in the IEEE 802.11n standard, which infringe the asserted patents. Linex asked court to enjoin and obtain damages resulting from defendants’ unauthorized manufacture of products, methods, processes, services, and/or systems that infringe one or more claims.
District Court Judgment:
At some point during the proceeding, the ‘322 patent was dropped by Linex and reissue patent RE43812 entitled ‘Multiple-input multiple-output (MIMO) spread-spectrum system and method’ was included.
The parties requested court to construe a number of disputed claim terms and defendants also filed motions for summary judgment on invalidity and non-infringement. Since the claim construction and summary judgment hearing, a number of the asserted claims have been dismissed with prejudice and defendants’ motion on invalidity in part and non-infringement on the remaining valid claims were granted. The court order concluded that:

  • claims 107-109 of the ‘219 patent and claims 97-98 of the ‘812 patent are invalid
  • claims 121, 131-132 of the ‘219 patent and claims 101-102 of the ‘812 patent are valid, but are not infringed by the accused devices.

Accordingly, in May 2014, court entered its judgment favoring defendants HP, Apple, Aruba Networks, Meru Networks and Ruckus Wireless. The defendants were then entitled to attorneys’ fees and other litigation expenses. 
See 2014-1626 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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