By Eric Schweibenz
On March 12, 2012, LSI Corporation of Milpitas, California (“LSI Corp.”) and its subsidiary Agere Systems Inc. of Allentown, Pennsylvania (“Agere”) (collectively, “LSI”) filed a complaint requesting that the ITC commence an investigation pursuant to Section 337.

The complaint alleges that the following entities (collectively, the “Proposed Respondents”) unlawfully import into the U.S., sell for importation, and/or sell within the U.S. after importation certain audiovisual components and products containing the same, including, without limitation, certain digital televisions, Blu-ray disc players, home theater systems, DVD players and/or recorders, and other substantially similar audiovisual devices and systems that infringe one or more claims of U.S. Patent Nos. 5,870,087 (the ‘087 patent), 6,452,958 (the ‘958 patent), 6,707,867 (the ‘867 patent), and 6,982,663 (the ‘663 patent) (collectively, the “asserted patents”):

  • Funai Electric Company, Ltd. of Japan

  • Funai Corporation, Inc. of Rutherford, New Jersey

  • P&F USA, Inc. of Alpharetta, Georgia

  • Funai Service Corporation of Groveport, Ohio

  • MediaTek Inc. of Taiwan

  • MediaTek USA Inc. of San Jose, California

  • MediaTek Wireless, Inc. (USA) of Woburn, Massachusetts

  • Ralink Technology Corporation of Taiwan

  • Ralink Technology Corporation (USA) of Cupertino, California

  • Realtek Semiconductor Corporation of Taiwan

According to the complaint, the asserted patents generally relate to wireless communications and multimedia data processing.  In particular, the ‘087 patent relates to digital video compression and decompression, and specifically to a decoding system that includes, among other components, transport logic, a system controller, a decoder, and a single unified memory.  The ‘958 patent relates to wireless communication, and specifically to digital modulation and demodulation methods and/or systems that provide increased data rates while minimizing performance degradation due to such factors as multipath signal transmission and noise interference.  The ‘867 patent relates to methods that synchronize a transmitter and a receiver in a wireless network (such as a wireless local area network), and systems that are capable of implementing such synchronization methods.  Lastly, the ‘663 patent relates to a system and method for encoding and decoding digital signals.

In the complaint, LSI states that the Proposed Respondents import and sell products that infringe the asserted patents.  The complaint specifically identifies a number of infringing products associated with the various Proposed Respondents.

Regarding domestic industry, LSI states that it has made significant investments in plant, equipment, labor, and capital in the U.S. with respect to the asserted patents in the form of research and development.  LSI further states that it has exploited the asserted patents through licensing, research and development, and engineering.  LSI refers to the “long and storied history of innovation” of itself and its predecessors, which include AT&T, Bell Labs, Lucent, Agere, LSI Logic, and VideoLocus.  LSI also states that it continues to invest heavily in research and development.  Additionally, LSI states that it has made substantial investments in the U.S. in the exploitation of the asserted patents through licensing, including investment in plant, equipment, labor, and capital dedicated to product market research, procurement of products suspected of infringement, patent-specific reverse engineering and related technical analysis, and correspondence and license negotiations with potential licensees.  LSI also refers to its licensees’ practice of the asserted patents and related significant investments in the U.S.  According to the complaint, these licensees include, inter alia, Acer Inc., Sony Corp., and Mitsumi Electric Company, Ltd.

As to related litigation, LSI states that on March 12, 2012, it filed a civil action in the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California alleging infringement of the asserted patents by the same Funai entities listed as Proposed Respondents in the instant ITC complaint.  Additionally, LSI refers to six other district court cases that each involve at least one of the asserted patents.  According to the complaint, three of these cases are still pending, and the other three resulted in favorable outcomes for Agere or LSI Corp.

With respect to potential remedy, LSI requests that the Commission issue a limited exclusion order and permanent cease and desist orders directed at the Proposed Respondents and any of their principals, stockholders, officers, directors, employees, agents, licensees, distributors, controlled or majority-owned business entities, successors, and assigns.