New 337 Complaints

STC Files New 337 Complaint Regarding Certain Semiconductor Products

By Eric Schweibenz
|
Jun
23
On June 23, 2010, STC.UNM of Albuquerque, New Mexico (“STC”) filed a complaint requesting that the ITC commence an investigation pursuant to Section 337. The complaint alleges that Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company Limited of Taiwan (“TSMC”) and Samsung Electronics Company Limited of South Korea (“Samsung”) unlawfully import into the U.S., sell for importation, and sell within the U.S. after importation certain semiconductor products made by advanced lithography techniques and products containing the same that infringe STC’s U.S. Patent No. 6,042,998 (the ‘998 patent). According to the complaint, the ‘998 patent generally relates to lithographic methods known as “double patterning” that are used for manufacturing small feature sizes during semiconductor fabrication.  In particular, the patented invention uses two layers of “photoresist” to form features in the same device layer.  The complaint alleges that the combination of spatial frequencies obtained from each layer of developed photoresist layers achieves high spatial frequencies that are not possible with only one layer of resist material.  The high spatial frequencies that are obtained correlate to smaller device features and spaces, in particular to features and spaces smaller than 38nm in dimension. In the complaint, STC alleges that TSMC and Samsung import and sell semiconductor chips that practice the asserted claims of the ‘998 patent.  In particular, the complaint alleges that TSMC has imported and sold 28nm prototype semiconductor chips to Altera Corporation (“Altera”) and Xilinx, Inc. (“Xilinx”) and that “[b]ecause the prototype and test chips are below 38nm in dimension, the 28nm devices that Altera and Xilinx received in the United States from TSMC necessarily infringe the ‘998 patent.”  The complaint further alleges that Samsung has sold for importation 34nm semiconductor devices, including at least a 34nm NAND flash memory chip found in Apple Inc.’s (“Apple”) iPad.  The complaint states that “[b]ecause the [Samsung] chips are below 38nm in dimension, the Samsung NAND flash devices in the Apple iPad necessarily infringe the ‘998 patent.” Regarding domestic industry, STC states that the ‘998 patent “is a significant part of STC’s overall intellectual property portfolio,” and that STC “negotiates approximately 28 technology transfer contracts per year.”  STC further states that it has 12 employees “devoted to the licensing of technology on behalf of [the University of New Mexico], including the ‘998 patent.” Moreover, as to related litigation, STC notes that it brought a patent infringement suit against Toshiba Corporation (“Toshiba”) in the U.S. District Court for the District of New Mexico in March 2009 but that STC dismissed its case against Toshiba in October 2009 after Toshiba licensed the ‘998 patent from STC.  In the complaint, STC claims that the Toshiba litigation was “part of its licensing efforts” and cites the litigation as additional support for its having satisfied the domestic industry requirement. With respect to potential remedy, STC requests that the Commission issue a permanent exclusion order and permanent cease-and-desist orders directed at TSMC and Samsung.
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HP Files New 337 Complaint Regarding Certain Inkjet Ink Supplies

By Eric Schweibenz
|
Jun
29
On June 25, 2010, Hewlett-Packard Company of Palo Alto, California (“HP”) and Hewlett-Packard Development Company, L.P. of Houston, Texas (“HPDC”) (collectively, “Complainants”) filed a complaint requesting that the ITC commence an investigation pursuant to Section 337. The complaint alleges that Mipo International Ltd. of Hong Kong; Mextec Group Inc. d/b/a Mipo America Ltd. of Miami, Florida; Shanghai Angel Printer Supplies Co. Ltd. of China; Shenzhen Print Media Co., Ltd. of China; Zhuhai National Resources & Jingjie Imaging Products Co., Ltd. of China; Tatrix International of China; and Ourway Image Co., Ltd. of China (collectively, the “Proposed Respondents”) have engaged in violations of Section 337 through unlicensed importation into the U.S., sale for importation, and/or sale within the U.S. after importation of certain inkjet ink supplies and components thereof that infringe one or more claims of U.S. Patent Nos. 6,959,985 (the ‘985 patent) and 7,104,630 (the ‘630 patent). According to the complaint, both the ‘985 patent and the ‘630 patent generally relate to printing-fluid containers, such as ink cartridges. Complainants allege that each of the Proposed Respondents manufactures or purchases black and/or color ink cartridges compatible with the “HP 02” product line in China and sells such cartridges for importation into the U.S.  According to the complaint, the accused “HP 02” compatible cartridges infringe several claims of both the ‘985 and ‘630 patents. Regarding domestic industry, Complainants name several inkjet ink supply products from the “HP 02” product line which they allege are protected by the ‘985 and ‘630 patents.  In addition, Complainants state that HP’s domestic industry activities include HP’s significant investment in plant and equipment, significant employment of labor and capital, and substantial investment in the exploitation of the ‘985 and ‘630 patents.  Complainants add that although HP does not presently manufacture its ink cartridges in the U.S., HP has conducted and continues to conduct many activities in the U.S. relating to its ink supply cartridges that practice the ‘985 and ‘630 patents. As to related litigation, Complainants assert that on September 23, 2009, HP filed a complaint against the Proposed Respondents relating to the ‘985 and ‘630 patents in the Central District of California, which was later voluntarily dismissed on March 18, 2010.  In addition, according to the complaint, on September 23, 2009, HP filed a complaint in the ITC against the Proposed Respondents relating to the ‘985 and ‘630 patents, as well as two additional patents.  Certain Inkjet Ink Supplies and Components Thereof, 337-TA-691.  On June 3, 2010, at the request of HP, however, ALJ Essex terminated the investigation with respect to the ‘985 and ‘630 patents. With respect to potential remedy, Complainants request that the ITC issue a permanent general exclusion order (or, in the alternative, a permanent limited exclusion order) and a permanent cease-and-desist order directed to each of the Proposed Respondents.
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Canon Files New 337 Complaint Regarding Certain Toner Cartridges

By Eric Schweibenz
|
Jun
30
On June 28, 2010, Canon Inc., Canon U.S.A., Inc. and Canon Virginia, Inc. (collectively, “Canon”) filed a complaint requesting that the ITC commence an investigation pursuant to Section 337. Canon alleges infringement of certain claims of two of its U.S. patents, 5,903,803 and 6,128,454 which both relate to a projection on photosensitive toner cartridge drums that allow users, rather than technicians, to remove and replace the drum.  In the complaint, Canon separates the Respondents into two categories. The first group is the so-called “Ninestar Respondents” (Ninestar Image-China, Ninestar Tech-China, Ninestar Mgt., Zhuhai Seine, Seine Image, Ninestar Image-Hong Kong, Ziprint, Nano Pacific, Ninestar-LA and Town Sky) which, according to Canon, are all under common ownership and control.  The Ninestar Group is alleged to infringe by manufacturing toner cartridges and importing them into the United States.  The second group – the “Retailer Respondents” (ACM Technologies, Inc., LD Products, Inc., Printer Essentials.com, Inc., XSE Group, Inc. d/b/a Image Star, Copy Technologies, Inc. d/b/a ITM Corporation, Red Powers, Inc. d/b/a LaptopTraveller.com, Direct Billing International, Inc. d/b/a OfficeSupplyOutfitters.com, Compu-Imaging, Inc., EIS Office Solutions, Inc., and 123 Refills, Inc.) – allegedly infringe through sales of the toner cartridges manufactured by the Ninestar Respondents. According to the complaint, Canon satisfies the economic prong of the domestic industry requirement in view of (1) Canon Virginia’s manufacture of millions of toner cartridges each year which are covered by the patents-in-suit, (2) employment of a significant number of employees in the United States, (3) Canon Virginia’s product and manufacturing engineering activities, and (4) Canon Virginia’s plans to manufacture additional toner cartridges covered by the patents-in-suit.  Further, the technical prong is satisfied because Canon Virginia produces, or will produce, toner cartridges covered by at least one claim of each of the patents-in-suit. Regarding related litigation, Canon asserts that it simultaneously filed a district court action in the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York.  With respect to potential remedy, Canon seeks a permanent limited exclusion order and permanent cease and desist orders directed to the proposed respondents.
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Interactive Life Forms Files New 337 Complaint Regarding Certain Devices Having Elastomeric Gel

By Eric Schweibenz
|
Jul
06
On June 30, 2010, Interactive Life Forms of Austin, Texas (“ILF”) filed a complaint requesting that the ITC commence an investigation pursuant to Section 337. The complaint alleges that California Exotic Novelties, Inc. (“Cal Exotic”) of Chino, California, Direct Advantage Values Enterprise, Inc. (“DAVE”) of San Francisco, California, Nanma Manufacturing Co., Limited (“NMC”) of Hong Kong, Shenzhen Shaki Industrial Co., Ltd. (“SSI”) of China, Pipedream Products, Inc. (“Pipedream”) of Chatsworth, California, Tenga Co., Ltd. of Japan, Vast Resources, Inc. d/b/a Topco Sales (“Topco”) of Chatsworth, California, Convergence Inc. of Los Angeles, California, E.T.C., Inc. d/b/a Eldorado Trading Company, Inc. of Broomfield, Colorado, Gigglesworld Corporation of Wappingers Falls, New York, Honey’s Place, Inc. of San Fernando, California, Joe Enterprises, Inc. of Phoenix, Arizona, Liberator, Inc. of Carson City, Nevada, Nalpac Enterprises, Ltd. d/b/a Nalpac, Ltd. of Ferndale, Michigan, Satistec, LLC of Las Vegas, Nevada, Universal Distributor of Santa Clarita, California, Williams Trading Co., Inc. of Pennsauken, New Jersey, W.T.F.N. Inc. d/b/a Holiday Products of Chatsworth, California, Barnaby Ltd, LLC of San Francisco, California, L.F.P., Inc. of Beverly Hills, California, LFP Internet Group, LLC of Beverly Hills, California, PHE, Inc. of Hillsborough, North Carolina, Polydigitech Inc. of Schaumburg, Illinois, Sawhorse Enterprises, Inc. of San Bruno, California, TEG, L.L.C. of Plano, Texas, and Web Merchants Inc. of Jamesburg, New Jersey (collectively, the “Proposed Respondents”) have sold for importation, imported, and/or sold within the U.S. after importation certain devices having elastomeric gel and components thereof that infringe certain claims of U.S. Patent Nos. 5,782,818 (the ‘818 patent) and 5,807,360 (the ‘360 patent) (collectively, “the Asserted Patents). According to the complaint, the devices at issue include, masturbators, sex toys, and novelty items that have an insert formed from an elastomeric gel with an opening to accommodate a human male sex organ.  In addition, both the ‘818 patent and the ‘360 patent generally relate to devices for discreet collection of sperm from human males. Complainants allege that each of the Proposed Respondents designs, manufactures, sells for importation, imports, and/or sells after importation infringing devices having elastomeric gel, including masturbators, sex toys, and novelty items. As to related litigation, Complainants assert that on June 30, 2010, ILF filed an infringement suit in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Texas alleging that Cal Exotic, DAVE, NMC, SSI, Pipedream, Tenga, and Topco infringe the Asserted Patents. Regarding domestic industry, Complainants assert that an industry exists in the U.S. relating to ILF’s devices at issue.  In addition, ILF states that it has made at least significant investment in plant and equipment, significant employment of labor and capital and/or substantial investment in engineering and research and development with respect to the Asserted Patents.  Complainants also point to their manufacturing and production factory in Austin, Texas as evidence of significant investment in the U.S. in plant and equipment to manufacture products practicing the Asserted Patents.  Further, ILF states it has made significant investments in employment of labor and capital associated with products practicing the Asserted Patents, including the employment of over 130 people.  Finally, Complainants assert they have made substantial investment in the exploitation of products that practice the Asserted Patents, including ongoing engineering and research and development of devices protected by the Asserted Patents. With respect to potential remedy, Complainants request that the ITC issue a general exclusion order (or, in the alternative, a limited exclusion order), a permanent exclusion order, and a permanent cease-and-desist order directed to each Proposed Respondent.
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Vizio Files New 337 Complaint Regarding Certain Flat Panel Digital Televisions

By Eric Schweibenz
|
Jul
19
On July 16, 2010, Vizio, Inc. of Irvine, California (“Vizio”) filed a complaint requesting that the ITC commence an investigation pursuant to Section 337. The complaint alleges that LG Electronics, Inc. of South Korea and LG Electronics U.S.A., Inc. of Englewood Cliffs, New Jersey (collectively, “LGE”) have sold for importation, imported, and/or sold within the U.S. after importation certain flat panel digital televisions and components thereof that infringe certain claims of U.S. Patent Nos. 5,511,096, 5,621,761, 5,703,887, 5,745,522, 5,511,082, 5,396,518, and 5,233,629 (collectively, “the Asserted Patents). According to the complaint, the “general technology at issue in this case involves the transmission and reception of digital television (‘TV’) signals via cable delivery systems.  More specifically, all of the Asserted Patents relate to the decoding and demodulation of digital TV signals transmitted via digital cable TV delivery system to a TV receiver.” In the complaint, Vizio alleges that LGE’s digital television products are manufactured, assembled, and/or packaged and tested overseas, at least in Mexico. Regarding related litigation, Vizio lists in its complaint a number of U.S. district court cases involving the asserted patents, including a pending litigation in the U.S. District Court for the District of Maryland against LGE, filed on June 5, 2009. With respect to domestic industry, Vizio asserts that an industry exists in the U.S. relating to its digital televisions.  Specifically, Vizio alleges that its digital televisions practice at least one claim of each of the Asserted Patents.  In addition, Vizio asserts that its significant employment of labor and capital, and its substantial investment in exploitation of the Asserted Patents, constitute a domestic industry under 19 U.S.C. §§ 1337(a)(3)(B) and (C). With respect to potential remedy, Vizio requests that the ITC issue a permanent limited exclusion order and permanent cease-and-desist orders directed to LGE. Also on July 16, the Commission issued its first notice of receipt of a complaint.  As we explained in our July 13, 2010 post, the Commission will now issue these notices upon receipt of a Section 337 complaint to solicit comments from the complainant, proposed respondents, other interested parties, and members of the public on any public interest issues raised by the complaints.  According to the July 16 notice, the Commission is interested in comments that (i) explain how the articles potentially subject to the orders are used in the U.S., (ii) identify any public health, safety, or welfare concerns in the U.S. relating to the potential orders, (iii) indicate the extent to which like or directly competitive articles are produced in the U.S. or are otherwise available in the U.S., with respect to the articles potentially subject to the orders, and (iv) indicate whether Complainant, its licensees, and/or third party suppliers have the capacity to replace the volume of articles potentially subject to an exclusion order and a cease and desist order within a commercially reasonable time.  The July 16 notice further indicates that written submissions must be filed no later than by close of business, five business days after the date of publication of the notice in the Federal Register.
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Invacare Files New 337 Complaint Regarding Certain Adjustable-Height Beds

By Eric Schweibenz
|
Aug
10
On August 5, 2010, Invacare Corporation of Elyria, Ohio (“Invacare”) filed a complaint requesting that the ITC commence an investigation pursuant to Section 337. The complaint alleges that Medical Depot, Inc., d/b/a Drive Medical Design and Manufacturing of Port Washington, New York (“Drive Medical”) and Shanghai Shunlong Physical Therapy Equipment Co., Ltd. of Shanghai, China (“Shunlong”) have sold for importation, imported, and/or sold within the U.S. after importation certain adjustable height beds and components thereof that infringe certain claims of U.S. Patent Nos. 6,983,495, 6,997,082, 7,302,716, and 7,441,289 (collectively, the “Asserted Patents”). According to the complaint, the Asserted Patents relate to adjustable beds and other features of such beds, including universal or interchangeable bed ends that can be used at either end of the bed. Invacare’s complaint asserts that Drive Medical directly infringes, contributes to infringement, and induces infringement of the Asserted Patents through the importation and/or the sale or offering for sale after importation into the United States of certain products (the “Accused Products”).  The complaint asserts that Shunlong directly infringes and contributes to the infringement of the Asserted Patents through the manufacture in China, sale for importation and/or importation into the United States of the same Accused Products. Regarding related litigation, Invacare asserts that on July 21, 2009, it filed a complaint for patent infringement involving the Asserted Patents, among others, against Drive Medical in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Ohio. With respect to domestic industry, Invacare asserts that its products practice the inventions claimed in the Asserted Patents (the "Invacare Beds").  Invacare further asserts that it has made substantial investments in the United States in plant and equipment, employment of labor and capital, research and development, and sales of the Invacare Beds, and that it manufactures its beds at a manufacturing plant in Sanford, Florida since 2003.  The Complaint alleges that all research, development, and design, engineering, and testing of the Invacare Beds was performed by Invacare employees in its U.S. facilities, and that these beds have been commercially successful products. With respect to potential remedy, Invacare requests the ITC to issue a permanent exclusion order and permanent cease-and-desist orders directed to Drive Medical and Shunlong.
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Duggal Files New 337 Complaint Regarding Certain Wind and Solar-Powered Light Posts and Street Lamps

By Eric Schweibenz
|
Aug
10
On August 6, 2010, Duggal Dimensions LLC (“Duggal Dimensions”), Duggal Energy Solutions, LLC (“Duggal Energy”), and Duggal Visual Solutions, Inc., all of New York, New York (collectively, “Duggal”) filed a complaint requesting the ITC to commence an investigation pursuant to Section 337. The complaint alleges that Gus Power Incorporated of Mississauga, Ontario, Efton Science Inc. of Toronto Ontario, King Luminaire, Inc. of Jefferson, Ohio, and The StressCrete Group of Burlington, Ontario (collectively, the “Respondents”) have sold for importation, imported, and/or sold within the U.S. after importation certain wind and solar-powered light posts that infringe the ornamental design of U.S. Patent No. D610,732 S (the “‘732 Patent”). Duggal’s complaint asserts that Respondents act in concert and infringe the ‘732 Patent by manufacturing in Canada, importing and/or selling or offering for sale after importation into the United States wind and solar powered light posts “virtually identical” to Duggal’s light posts which are covered by the ‘732 Patent. With respect to the economic prong of the domestic industry requirement, Duggal Dimensions, the assignee of the ‘732 Patent, states it has licensed its affiliate Duggal Energy to practice the ‘732 Patent, and that Duggal Dimensions is actively engaged in discussing licensing with other potential licensees, and it has made substantial investment in attempting to license the ‘732 Patent.  Duggal further identifies that it invested more than $800,000 in production materials, supplies, research and development, and manufacturing devoted to exploiting the ‘732 patent, and that all design and manufacturing activities take place in the state of New York.  Duggal also states that it made substantial investment in registering the U.S. trademark “LUMI• SOLAIR” under which it markets the ornamental design shown in the ‘732 Patent.  Regarding the technical prong of the domestic industry requirement, Duggal asserts that they practice the ‘732 Patent by designing, engineering, arranging for manufacturing, and offering for sale wind and solar-powered light posts under the registered trademark “LUMI• SOLAIR.” With respect to potential remedy, Duggal requests the ITC to issue an exclusion order and permanent cease-and-desist orders directed to the Respondents.
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Spansion Files New 337 Complaint Regarding Certain Flash Memory Chips

By Eric Schweibenz
|
Aug
11
On August 6, 2010, Spansion LLC (“Spansion”), of Sunnyvale, California filed a complaint requesting that the ITC commence an investigation pursuant to Section 337. The complaint alleges that chip manufacturers/distributors Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd. of South Korea, Samsung Electronics America, Inc. of Ridgefield Park, New Jersey, Samsung International, Inc. of San Diego, California, Samsung Semiconductor, Inc. of San Jose, California, Samsung Telecommunications America, LLC of Richardson, Texas (collectively “Samsung”), and downstream manufacturers/sellers Apple, Inc. of Cupertino, California, BenQ Corp. of Taiwan, BenQ America Corp. of Irvine, California,  Qisda Corp. of Taiwan, Kingston Technology Company, Inc. of Fountain Valley, California, Kingston Technology (Shanghai) Co. Ltd. of China, Kingston Technology Far East Co. of Taiwan, Kingston Technology Far East (Malaysia) of Malaysia, MiTAC Digital Corporation (aka Magellan) of Santa Clara, California, MiTAC International Corporation of Taiwan, Nokia Corp. of Finland, Nokia Inc. of Irving, Texas, PNY Technologies, Inc. of Parsippany, New Jersey, Research In Motion Ltd. of Canada, Research in Motion Corporation of Irving, Texas, Sirius XM Radio, Inc. of New York, New York, Transcend Information Inc. of Taiwan, Transcend Information Inc. (US) of Orange, California, Transcend Information Inc. (Shanghai Factory) of China (collectively, “Respondents”) through current and/or imminent manufacture, sale for importation, importation, and/or sale within the U.S. after importation of certain Samsung flash memory chips and downstream products containing those Samsung chips infringe certain claims in U.S. Patent Nos. 7,018,922 (the ‘922 patent), 6,900,124 (the ‘124 patent), 6,459, 625 (the ‘625 Patent), and/or 6,369,416 (the ‘416 patent) (collectively, the “Asserted Patents”). The complaint asserts that the Samsung chips at issue include some of Samsung’s most recent generations of flash memory chips, namely Samsung’s 35, 42, 51, and 65 nanometer NAND Flash Memory Technology Node devices.  The complaint further asserts that such Samsung chips are assembled into downstream products by Respondents, including wireless phones, smartphones, camera phones, MP3 players, DVD players, DVRs, GPS devices, electronic card reader devices, televisions, and computers. The complaint further asserts that the Asserted Patents generally describe how to structure, isolate, program, manufacture, and operate memory cells in a way that makes a chip containing those memory cells smaller, faster, less expensive and more reliable.  More specifically, the complaint asserts that the ‘922 and ‘124 patents describe a contact, formed between stacked gate layers in a flash memory device, that is shaped to improve reliability as the devices reduce in size.  The complaint asserts that the ‘625 patent describes optimizing electrical interconnection of components in the periphery area of the memory device, thereby minimizing the periphery area and facilitating smaller overall device sizes.  Finally, the complaint asserts that  the ‘416 patent describes an insulating layer substantially surrounding a gate portion, and a contact in the insulating layer with a sloped profile that facilitates higher density of devices while reducing change gain and loss through the contact. With respect to the domestic industry requirement, Spansion asserts that is has significant investments in plant and equipment and in labor or capital in the United States, and substantial investment in the exploitation of the Asserted Patents through research and development, engineering, licensing, product development, testing, and quality control.  Spansion specifically asserts that its facilities in Austin, Texas manufacture chips that are sold commercially, and the overwhelming majority of the production output at these facilities practice the subject matter of the Asserted Patents. With respect to potential remedy, Spansion requests the ITC to issue a permanent general exclusion order, a permanent limited exclusion order specifically directed to each Respondent and its affiliates, and a permanent cease-and-desist order.
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Lexmark Files New 337 Complaint Regarding Certain Toner Cartridges

By Eric Schweibenz
|
Aug
25
On August 20, 2010, Lexmark International, Inc. (“Lexmark”), of Lexington, Kentucky filed a complaint requesting that the ITC commence an investigation pursuant to Section 337. The complaint alleges that Ninestar Image Co. Ltd. (a/k/a Ninestar Technology Co., Ltd.) of China, Ninestar Image Int'l, Ltd. of China, Seine Image International Co. Ltd. of Hong Kong, Ninestar Technology Company, Ltd. of Piscataway, New Jersey, Ziprint Image Corporation of Walnut, California, Nano Pacific Corporation of South San Francisco, California, IJSS Inc. (d/b/a TonerZone.com Inc. and Inkjet Superstore) of Los Angeles, California, Chung Pal Shin (d/b/a Ink Master) of Cerritos, California, Nectron International, Inc. of Sugarland, Texas, Quality Cartridges Inc. of Brooklyn, New York, Direct Billing International Incorporated (d/b/a Office Supply Outfitter and The Ribbon Connection) of Carlsbad, California, E-Toner Mart, Inc. of South El Monte, California, Alpha Image Tech of South El Monte, California, ACM Technologies, Inc. of Corona, California, Virtual Imaging Products Inc. of Canada, Acecom Inc-San Antonio (d/b/a inksell.com) of San Antonio, Texas, Ink Technologies Printer Supplies, LLC (d/b/a Ink Technologies LLC) of Dayton, Ohio, Jahwa Electronics Co., Ltd. of South Korea, Huizhou Jahwa Electronics Co., Ltd of China, Copy Technologies, Inc. of Atlanta, Georgia, Laser Toner Technology, Inc. of Atlanta, Georgia, C & R Services, Inc. of Corinth, Texas, Print-Rite Holdings Ltd. of Hong Kong, and Union Technology Int'l, (M.C.O.) Co. of Macao (collectively, “Respondents”) through the manufacture, sale for importation, importation, and/or sale within the U.S. after importation of replaceable toner cartridges and components thereof infringe certain claims in U.S. Patent Nos. 5,337,032 (‘032 patent), 5,634,169 (‘169 patent), 5,758,233 (‘233 patent), 5,768,661 (‘661 patent), 5,802,432 (‘432 patent), 5,875,378 (‘378 patent), 6,009,291 (‘291 patent), 6,078,771 (‘771 patent), 6,397,015 (‘015 patent), 6,459,876 (‘876 patent), 6,816,692 (‘692 patent), 6,871,031 (‘031 patent), 7,139,510 (‘510 patent), 7,233,760 (‘760 patent), and/or 7,305,204 (‘204 patent) (collectively, the “Asserted Patents”). The complaint more specifically asserts that the products at issue are replaceable cartridges and components thereof used to supply toner to Lexmark laser printers for black-and-white printing.  The complaint further asserts that Respondents provided copies or “clones” of  Lexmark genuine toner cartridges (i.e., “compatible” cartridges) that are covered by the Asserted Patents, or Respondents provide genuine Lexmark toner cartridges originally first sold outside of the United States that have been refilled and worn components replaced (i.e., “remanufactured” cartridges) that are covered by the Asserted Patents. The complaint asserts that the ‘032 patent is directed toward a reduced component toner cartridge with a configuration that eliminates the need for a separate toner pump.  The complaint describes the ‘169 patent and ‘015 patent as relating to encoded devices, for example an encoder wheel, wherein a toner agitator or paddle are mounted to a shaft that rotates the encoded device and paddle at the same time.  Slots or windows on the encoded device convey information about the cartridge to the printer including, for example, the cartridge type or size, toner capacity, amount of toner remaining in the cartridge, toner type, photoconductive drum type, and whether the cartridge is an OEM cartridge.  The complaint describes the ‘233 patent as pertaining to a toner cartridge comprised of two assemblies and having locating surfaces that aid in positioning the cartridge within a printer.  The ‘661 patent is directed to a pair of curved “wing-like” guides on two sides of the toner cartridge to follow a curved guide track in the printer in which the cartridge is installed, facilitating insertion of the toner cartridge into the printer.  The complaint describes the ‘432 patent as directed to a spring assembly holding together two housing members comprising a toner cartridge, wherein only two rear rollers are provided in the cartridge, and the two rollers which usually correspond to two front wheels in a cartridge are in the printer - reducing positional variations in the developer unit or breakage of the front wheels of a cartridge during rough handling.  The complaint describes the ‘378 patent as directed to an agitator at an exit surface of the toner hopper, arranged such that it jars toner loose and eliminates jams of toner.  The ‘291 patent describes increasing control of the PC drum by utilizing a frictional member, such as a spring clutch having uniform drag pressed against the PC drum.   The ‘771 patent is described as relating to structures used to position a doctor blade against a developer roller within a toner cartridge to ensure an even amount of toner and consistent print quality, while the ‘876 patent is directed to a dual-paddle for moving and agitating toner within the toner hopper of the toner cartridge. The ‘510 patent, ‘204 patent, and ‘031 patent are described in the complaint as pertaining generally to two-part toner cartridges comprising a developer unit and a photoconductor unit that are biased together by a front cover of a printer in which the two-part cartridge is inserted.  The ‘692 patent is described as relating generally to a support assembly for mounting a roller body to a frame of a toner cartridge and for protecting the roller body from being damaged or deformed from lateral forces.   Lastly, the ‘760 Patent is described as relating generally to a system for positioning a doctor blade of a toner cartridge against a developer roller while preventing toner loss. Regarding related litigation, Lexmark identifies a number of U.S. district court cases that involved several of the Asserted Patents.  Lexmark added that concurrently with its complaint, it filed an action against all proposed Respondents in the United States District Court for the Southern District of Ohio for infringement of the Asserted Patents. With respect to the technical prong of the domestic industry requirement, Lexmark asserts that several of its monochrome toner cartridges are covered by the Asserted Patents.  As to the economic prong, Lexmark asserts it has significant investments in plant and equipment, for example through its two largest facilities in Lexington, Kentucky and Boulder Colorado dedicated in whole or in part to the development and production of its cartridges covered by the Asserted Patents. With respect to potential remedy, Lexmark requests the ITC to issue a permanent general exclusion order, or in the alternative, a limited exclusion order forbidding entry into the United States of all toner cartridges infringing the Asserted Patents, and a permanent cease-and-desist order directed to each Respondent.
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Chimei Innolux Files New 337 Complaint Regarding Certain Liquid Crystal Display Devices

By Eric Schweibenz
|
Aug
26
On August 23, 2010, Chimei Innolux Corporation of Taiwan, Chi Mei Optoelectronics U.S.A., Inc. of San Jose, California, and Innolux Corporation of Austin, Texas (collectively, “CMI”) filed a complaint requesting that the ITC commence an investigation pursuant to Section 337. The complaint alleges that Sony Corporation of Japan, Sony Corporation of America of New York, New York, Sony Electronics Corporation of San Diego, California, and Sony Computer Entertainment America, LLC of Foster City, California (collectively, “Respondents” or “Sony”) through the manufacture, sale for importation, importation, and/or sale within the U.S. after importation of liquid crystal display devices and products interoperable with same infringe certain claims in U.S. Patent Nos. 6,134,092 (‘092 patent), 6,671,019 (‘019 patent), and 5,732,241 (‘241 patent) (collectively, the “Asserted Patents”). The complaint more specifically asserts that the Sony products at issue are LCD televisions, computer monitors and notebooks, digital cameras, and video gaming consoles. The complaint asserts that the ‘092 patent is directed to an illumination display device using point light sources, such as LED chips to emit light that travels through a waveguide and illuminates an LCD screen, wherein diffusive reflective surfaces reflect light emitted by the LED chips into areas of the waveguide between the light sources to create a substantially uniform illumination.  The complaint describes the ‘019 patent as directed generally to liquid crystals in LCD displays using a pixel electrode pattern that includes at least one non-conductive gap, the size and location of which allows for improved control of the liquid crystal orientation, resulting in faster switching speeds and a higher quality display.  The ‘241 Patent is described as a novel cache memory system architecture that decouples the computer's main system memory from the computer host's data bus, using a set of registers or buffers as temporary storage locations between the cache memory and the host bus, and between the cache memory and the system bus, which allows the CPU or host to access the cache while system memory transfer operations are being performed in parallel, and also hides lengthy main memory operations from the host. Regarding related litigation, CMI identifies two separate U.S. district court cases that involved two of the Asserted Patents.  CMI added that concurrently with its complaint, it filed an action against Sony in the United States District Court for the District of Delaware for infringement of the Asserted Patents. With respect to the technical prong of the domestic industry requirement, CMI asserts that several of its LCD television and computer monitor product lines practice one or more claims of the ‘019 and ‘092 patents, while products manufactured by a third party licensee of the ‘241 patent practices at least one of more claims of the asserted patents.   As to the economic prong, CMI asserts it has made significant investment in plant and equipment in the United States, and it made substantial investment in the exploitation of the ‘019 and ‘092 patents by engineering and research and development in the United States, while a third party licensee made substantial investments in labor and capital in activities related to the ‘241 patent. With respect to potential remedy, Lexmark requests the ITC to issue a permanent exclusion order pursuant to Section 337(d), and a permanent cease-and-desist order pursuant to Section 337(f) directed to each Respondent.
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American GNC Files New 337 Complaint Regarding Certain Marine Autopilots with GPS or IMU

By Eric Schweibenz
|
Aug
30
On August 26, 2010, American GNC of Simi Valley, California (“AGNC”) filed a complaint requesting that the ITC commence an investigation pursuant to Section 337. The complaint alleges that Furuno Electronics Co., Ltd. of Japan, Furuno U.S.A. Inc. of Camas, Washington, Navico Holding AS of Norway, Navico UK, Ltd. of the United Kingdom, Navico, Inc. of Nashua, New Hampshire, Flir Systems, Inc. of Wilsonville, Oregon, Raymarine UK Ltd. of the United Kingdom, and Raymarine Inc. of Merrimack, New Hampshire (collectively, the “Proposed Respondents”) through the manufacture, sale for importation, importation, and/or sale within the U.S. after importation of marine autopilots with GPS or IMU and components thereof infringe certain claims in U.S. Patent No. 6,596,976 (the ‘976 patent). The complaint describes the ‘976 patent as relating to a method and system for pointing and stabilizing a device which needs to be pointed and stabilized with a determined orientation, for example, an antennae, missile, or rifle, wherein output signals of an inertial measurement unit and the desired direction information are processed to compute rotation commands to an actuator; the actuator rotates and stabilizes the device at the desired direction according to the rotation commands.  The complaint further states that the method and system also provide a visual and voice device attached to provide a user with visualization and voice indications of targets and the pointing and stabilization operational procedure.  The complaint asserts that this system has been adopted by the Proposed Respondents for use in various marine autopilot devices with a GPS or IMU, making it possible, for example, to maintain a set course that is not affected by wind and tide. With respect to the technical prong of the domestic industry requirement, AGNC asserts that several of its products, including those it manufactures for the United States Navy are covered in whole or in part by the ‘976 patent, and that all of its work for such products, including research and development, consultation, manufacturing, product sales, sales support, licensing and operations occurs in its Simi Valley, California location.  With respect to the economic prong, the complaint alleges AGNC's domestic industry activities include significant investment in plant and equipment, significant employment of labor and capital and substantial investment in engineering and R&D with respect to its products practicing the ‘976 patent. Regarding potential remedy, AGNC seeks a permanent exclusion order pursuant to Section 337(d), or in the alternative, a permanent limited exclusion order, and a permanent cease-and-desist order pursuant to Section 337(f) directed to each of the Proposed Respondents.
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Thomson Licensing Files New 337 Complaint Regarding Certain Liquid Crystal Displays

By Eric Schweibenz
|
Aug
31
On August 27, 2010, Thomson Licensing SAS of France and Thomson Licensing LLC of Princeton, New Jersey (collectively “Thomson Licensing”) filed a complaint requesting that the ITC commence an investigation pursuant to Section 337. The complaint alleges that Chimei Innolux Corporation of Taiwan, Innolux Corporation of Austin, Texas, Chi Mei Optoelectronics USA, Inc. of San Jose, California, and MStar Semiconductor, Inc. of Taiwan (collectively, the “Proposed Respondents”) through the manufacture, sale for importation, importation, and/or sale within the U.S. after importation of certain liquid crystal display devices, including monitors, televisions, and modules, and components thereof infringe certain claims in U.S. Patent Nos. 6,121,941 (the ‘941 patent), 5,978,063 (the ‘063 patent), 5,648,674 (the ‘674 patent), 5,621,556 (the ‘556 patent), and 5,375,006 (the ‘006 patent) (collectively, “asserted patents”). More specifically, Thomson Licensing describes the accused products as liquid crystal display (LCD) devices manufactured and imported from China, including monitors, televisions, and modules and components thereof, including LCD panels, LCD controllers, and birefringent film. The complaint describes the ‘941 patent as relating to devices and methods that utilize the total time - that is, the time associated with the active regions and inactive periods - in CRT video image signals to create images that can be displayed on an LCD with more lines using a lower clock frequency than could have been used to generate the same display on a CRT, wherein the active regions of an input video image signal are sampled and written into a buffer memory at a first rate, and they are read out of the memory at a second rate and processed and displayed on the LCD using the same total time available from the CRT video image.  The ‘063 patent is described as disclosing and claiming LCD panel spacer elements that are positioned and shaped or formed in non-active areas of an active matrix LCD in order to minimize picture distortion while maintaining a uniform distance between the substrates, wherein the spacing elements also allow for an alignment layer to be placed over them and be effectively mechanically rubbed, which enhances display quality.  The complaint describes the ‘674 patent as directed to an improved structure for the pixel electrode, and its associated capacitor of an active matrix LCD thin film transistor (TFT), wherein the area occupied by the pixel electrode and the added capacitor is maximized, and it can be more efficiently fabricated by forming the data line, portions of the TFT, and the top electrode of the added capacitor from the same layer of a highly conductive metal.  The complaint further describes the structure taught and claimed by the ‘674 patent to include a pixel electrode made from indium tin oxide that is electrically connected to the TFT through the top electrode of the added capacitor.  The ‘556 patent is described as directed to an active matrix LCD made by forming bottom-gate type TFTs and pixel electrodes over a passivation layer, wherein the passivation layer and gate insulating layer have specific relative etch rates to allow for the creation of a via through both layers resulting in simpler processing and better panel performance.  The complaint describes the ‘006 patent as teaching and claiming a structure that diminishes light leakage by including a material extending in a plane parallel to and between the first and second polarizers, which material has a uniaxial negative birefringence along an axis inclined with respect to the normal to the plane in which the material extends. The complaint alleges that Thomson Licensing conducts significant domestic industry activities in the United States relating to the asserted patents, including Thomson Licensing LLC's substantial investment in the exploitation of the patents-at-issue through an extensive program of licensing those patents to over 180 companies.  The complaint further asserts that Thomson Licensing LLC has invested substantial resources, labor, and capital in order to exploit the patents-at-issue in the United States through such licenses, and that Thomson Licensing LLC conducts its extensive licensing activities in the United States primarily from its facility in Princeton, New Jersey. With respect to related litigation the complaint states that on July 23, 2010, Thomson Licensing filed a complaint in the U.S. District Court for the District of Delaware against the Proposed Respondents for infringement of the Asserted Patents.   The complaint also states that on April 20, 2010, April 22, 2010, and June 14, 2010, ex parte requests for reexamination were filed against the ‘674 patent, the ‘556 patent, and the ‘006 patent, respectively. Regarding potential remedy, Thomson Licensing seeks a limited exclusion order pursuant to Section 337(d), and a permanent cease-and-desist order pursuant to Section 337(f) directed to Chimei Innolux and their affiliates and subsidiaries.
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Leviton Files New 337 Complaint Regarding Certain Ground Fault Circuit Interrupters

By Eric Schweibenz
|
Sep
08
On September 3, 2010, Leviton Manufacturing Co., Inc. ("Leviton") of Melville, New York, filed a complaint requesting that the ITC commence an investigation pursuant to Section 337. The complaint alleges that manufacturers Fujian Hongan Electric Co, Ltd. of China, General Protecht Group, Inc. of China, Shanghai ELE Manufacturing Corporation of China, Zhejiang Trimone Co. Ltd. of China, and Zhejiang Easting House Electric Co. of China, and downstream distributors/resellers Menard, Inc. of Eau Claire, Wisconsin, Garvin Industries, Inc. of Franklin Park, Illinois, Central Purchasing, LLC of Camarillo, California, Harbor Freight Tools USA, Inc., of Camarillo, California, Warehouse-Lighting.com LLC of Muskego, Wisconsin, SecurElectric Corporation of Atlanta, Georgia, G-Techt Global Corporation, of Atlanta, Georgia, Frontier Lighting, Inc. of Clearwater, Florida, The Designers Edge, Inc. of Bellevue, Washington, Orbit Industries, Inc. of Los Angeles, California, Ready Wholesale Electric and Lighting, Inc. of Reseda, California, Sutherland Lumber Company of Kansas City, LLC, of Kansas City, Missouri, W.E. Aubuchon Co., Inc. of Westminster, Massachusetts, Westside Wholesale Electric & Lighting, Inc. of Los Angeles, California, Deerso, Inc. of Cape Coral, Florida, New Aspen Devices Corp. of Brooklyn, New York, American Ace Supply Inc. of San Francisco, California, Safety Plus Products, Inc. of McFarland, Wisconsin, Ingram Products, Inc. of Jacksonville, Florida, American Electric Depot Inc. of Fresh Meadows, New York, Contractor Lighting & Supply, Inc. of Columbus, Ohio, Interline Brands, Inc., d/b/a AF Lighting of Jacksonville, Florida, Royal Pacific Ltd. of Albuquerque, New Mexico, Littman Bros. Energy Supplies, Inc. of Schaumburg, Illinois, Norcross Electric Supply Company of Suwanee, Georgia (collectively, the “Proposed Respondents”) through the unlicensed importation, sale for importation, and/or sale after importation into the United States of certain ground fault circuit interrupters (GFCIs) and products containing the same infringe certain claims in U.S. Patent Nos. 7,463,124 (the ‘124 patent),  7,737,809 (the ‘809 patent), and 7,764,151 (the ‘151 patent) (collectively, “asserted patents”). The complaint describes each of the asserted patents as generally relating to isolating conductors in a GFCI to protect against problems arising from a reverse wired GFCI, as well as a condition called “reset lockout,” which protects against a GFCI that is damaged and can no longer provide protections from a ground fault.  The complaint states that the technology describes separately isolated line, face and load conductive paths, each of which separate if the GFCI trips, so there is no power to the face, and if the device is reset, the line terminal, load terminal and face are electronically reconnected.  With respect to the “reset lockout” condition, the complaint describes an arrangement wherein unless the device that separates the contacts is still working, the conductive paths cannot be reconnected. With respect to the technical prong of the domestic industry requirement, the complaint alleges that all of Leviton’s GFCIs practice at least one claim of each of the asserted patents, and that at least one of its licensees sells in the United States GFCIs that practice at least the ‘124 patent and the ‘809 patent.  With respect to the economic prong, Leviton alleges that it has made substantial investments and employment of labor and capital in the United States in research and development, engineering, design, testing, quality assurance, manufacturing processes, distribution, purchasing, marketing, sales and licensing for GFCIs, including those that practice the claims of the asserted patents. With respect to related litigation the complaint states that it contemporaneously filed a complaint in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California against the Proposed Respondents for infringement of the asserted patents.   The complaint further identifies eleven prior litigations concerning patents related to the asserted patents, some of which involved certain of the Proposed Respondents. Regarding potential remedy, Leviton seeks a general exclusion order pursuant to Section 337(d), or in the alternative a permanent limited exclusion order, and a permanent cease-and-desist order pursuant to Section 337(f) directed to the Proposed Respondents.
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LG Files New 337 Complaint Regarding Certain Digital Televisions

By Eric Schweibenz
|
Sep
16
On September 15, 2010, LG Electronics, Inc. of South Korea (“LG”) filed a complaint requesting that the ITC commence an investigation pursuant to Section 337. The complaint alleges that Vizio, Inc. of Irvine, California (“Vizio”), AmTRAN Technology Co., Ltd. of Taiwan (“AmTRAN Tech”) and AmTRAN Logistics, Inc. of Irvine, California (“ALI”) (AmTRAN Tech and ALI collectively, “AmTRAN”) unlawfully import into the U.S., sell for importation, and sell within the U.S. after importation certain digital televisions and components thereof that infringe U.S. Patent Nos. RE37,070 (the ‘070 patent), 6,785,906 (the ‘906 patent), and 6,598,233 (the ‘233 patent) (collectively, the “asserted patents”). According to the complaint, the asserted patents generally relate to signal processing in digital televisions.  In particular, the ‘070 patent relates to technology for sampling signals used in the circuitry for digital televisions, the ‘906 patent relates to technology used in digital televisions capable of processing internet content, and the ‘233 patent relates to technology used in channel switching. In the complaint, LG alleges that Vizio and AmTRAN import and sell digital televisions and components thereof that practice certain claims of the asserted patents.  In particular, the complaint cites Vizio’s SV422XVT digital television model -- manufactured by AmTRAN -- as a representative example of an infringing product. Regarding domestic industry, LG states that it sells digital televisions within the U.S. that practice at least one claim of each of the asserted patents.  LG cites to its plant facilities and equipment in the U.S. dedicated to the service and engineering of products covered by the asserted patents, including facilities in Huntsville, Alabama and Rancho Cucamonga, California.  LG further states that it employs a significant number of employees in these facilities that devote substantial man-hours towards product support, testing and quality management, and warranty and repair services for products covered by the asserted patents. As to related litigation, LG states that contemporaneously with the filing of the instant ITC complaint, LG also filed suit in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Texas asserting that Vizio and AmTRAN infringe the ‘070, ‘906, and ‘233 patents. With respect to potential remedy, LG requests that the Commission issue a permanent exclusion order and permanent cease-and-desist orders directed at Vizio and AmTRAN.
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Motiva Files New 337 Complaint Regarding Certain Video Game Systems And Controllers

By Eric Schweibenz
|
Oct
04
On October 1, 2010, Motiva, LLC of Dublin, Ohio (“Motiva”) filed a complaint requesting that the ITC commence an investigation pursuant to Section 337. The complaint alleges that Nintendo Co., Ltd. of Japan and Nintendo of America, Inc. of Redmond, Washington (“NOA”) (collectively, “Nintendo”) unlawfully import into the U.S., sell for importation, and sell within the U.S. after importation certain video game systems and controllers that infringe U.S. Patent Nos. 7,292,151 (the ‘151 patent) and 7,492,268 (the ‘268 patent) (collectively, the “asserted patents”). According to the complaint, the asserted patents generally relate to a human movement measurement system.  In particular, the asserted patents cover systems and controllers for tracking a user’s position, orientation, and movement in three dimensions.  The systems include a wireless hand-held and/or body-worn controller and a base station that processes information from the controller and sends feedback signals back to the controller. In the complaint, Motiva alleges that Nintendo imports and sells products that infringe the asserted patents.  In particular, the complaint cites Nintendo’s Wii Console, Wii Remote, Wii Nunchuk, and Wii MotionPlus devices as infringing articles. Regarding domestic industry, Motiva states that the inventors of the asserted patents have spent a considerable amount of time on:  (1) the engineering, research, design and development, and building of the proof of concept and demonstration prototypes for their invention; (2) development, drafting, revision, and prosecution of the patent applications that issued as the asserted patents and related applications; (3) meetings with potential investors to bring their inventions to market, including developing business plans, preparing presentations and demonstrating the prototype; and (4) litigating the ‘151 patent against Nintendo.  Motiva also states that it has created prototype products that practice at least one claim of each of the asserted patents and, accordingly, it has satisfied the technical prong of the domestic industry requirement. As to related litigation, Motiva states that on November 10, 2008, Motiva filed suit against Nintendo for infringement of the ‘151 patent in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Texas.  On December 17, 2009, the Federal Circuit issued a writ of mandamus transferring the case to the Western District of Washington.  The case was docketed in the Western District of Washington on March 3, 2010.  Shortly thereafter, Nintendo filed a request with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (“PTO”) for inter partes reexamination of the ‘151 patent.  Pursuant to Nintendo’s request, the PTO ordered inter partes reexamination of the ‘151 patent on June 4, 2010.  On June 11, 2010, the district court issued an order staying the case pending reexamination of the ‘151 patent and exhaustion of all appeals. With respect to potential remedy, Motiva requests that the Commission issue a permanent limited exclusion order and a permanent cease-and-desist order directed at NOA.
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Microsoft Files New 337 Complaint Regarding Certain Mobile Devices

By Eric Schweibenz
|
Oct
05
On October 1, 2010, Microsoft Corporation of Redmond, Washington (“Microsoft”) filed a complaint requesting that the ITC commence an investigation pursuant to Section 337. The complaint alleges that Motorola, Inc. of Schaumburg, Illinois (“Motorola”) unlawfully and without authorization imports into the U.S., sells for importation, and/or sells within the U.S. after importation certain mobile devices, associated software, and components thereof that infringe U.S. Patent Nos. 5,579,517 (the ‘517 patent); 5,758,352 (the ‘352 patent); 6,621,746 (the ‘746 patent); 6,826,762 (the ‘762 patent); 6,909,910 (the ‘910 patent); 7,644,376 (the ‘376 patent); 5,664,133 (the ‘133 patent); 6,578,054 (the ‘054 patent); and 6,370,566 (the ‘566 patent) (collectively, the “asserted patents”). According to the complaint, (1) the ‘517 and ‘352 patents “relate to the field of computer operating systems, file systems and file names,” specifically “implementing both long and short file names in the same file system,” (2) the ‘746 patent “relates to flash memory devices, and more particularly, monitoring when to perform an erase operation in a flash memory device,” (3) the ‘762 patent “relates to application programming  interfaces (APIs),” in particular “a Radio Interface Layer, comprising a set of APIs,” (4) the ‘910 patent relates “to updating a contact database within a mobile computing device,” (5) the ‘376 patent relates to an API “through which applications on a mobile device can learn about state changes to the mobile device,” (6)  the ‘133 patent relates “to graphical user interfaces wherein a user selects from a collection of graphical representations displayed upon a video screen,” (7) the ‘054 patent “relates to the support of on-line and off-line transmission and synchronization of data,” and (8) the ‘566 patent relates “to generating meeting requests and group scheduling from a mobile device.” The accused products identified in the complaint include the Motorola Droid 2, the Motorola Droid X, the Motorola i1, the Motorola Cliq XT, the Motorola Devour, the Motorola Backflip, the Motorola Charm, and the Motorola Cliq. Regarding domestic industry, Microsoft asserts that its “domestic activities in connection with Windows Mobile 6 and Windows Phone 7 include significant investment in plant and equipment, significant employment of labor and capital, and substantial investment in engineering and research and development related to products employing the [asserted patents].” With respect to related litigation, Microsoft identifies in the complaint various proceedings regarding certain of the asserted patents, including another ITC complaint, a number of district court actions, reexaminations before the U.S. Patent & Trademark Office, and actions in Germany and Canada regarding foreign counterparts to certain of the asserted patents. As to potential remedy, Microsoft requests that the Commission issue a permanent exclusion order pursuant to 19 U.S.C. § 1337(d) and a permanent cease-and-desist order pursuant to 19 U.S.C. § 1337(f).
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Motorola Mobility Files New 337 Complaint Regarding Certain Wireless Communication Devices, Portable Music And Data Processing Devices

By Eric Schweibenz
|
Oct
08
On October 6, 2010, Motorola Mobility, Inc. of Libertyville, Illinois (“Motorola”) filed a complaint requesting that the ITC commence an investigation pursuant to Section 337. The complaint alleges that Apple Inc. of Cupertino, California (“Apple”) unlawfully imports into the U.S., sells for importation, and sells within the U.S. after importation certain wireless communications devices, portable music and data processing devices, computers, and components thereof that infringe U.S. Patent Nos. 6,272,333 (the ‘333 patent), 6,246,862 (the ‘862 patent), 6,246,697 (the ‘697 patent), 5,359,317 (the ‘317 patent), 5,636,223 (the ‘223 patent), and 7,751,826 (the ‘826 patent) (collectively, the “asserted patents”). According to the complaint, the asserted patents generally relate to various features found in wireless devices.  In particular, the ‘333 patent relates to controlling applications and the transmission of data in wireless communications systems.  The ‘862 patent relates to a system for controlling the operation of a user interface (such as a touch screen) in a wireless device, such as a smartphone.  The ‘697 patent relates to transmitting voice and data signals in wireless communication systems.  The ‘317 patent relates to selective call receivers.  The ‘223 patent relates to communication systems and methods of adaptable channel access in data communications systems.  Finally, the ‘826 patent relates to a system that enables the user of a wireless device, such as a smartphone, to control when the Global Positioning System (GPS) of the smartphone is able to send location data over the wireless network. In the complaint, Motorola alleges that Apple imports and sells products that infringe the asserted patents.  In particular, the complaint cites Apple’s iPhone 3G, iPhone 3GS, iPhone 4, iPod Touch 4, iPad, iPad 3G, AppleTV, MacBook, MacBook Pro, MacBook Air, iMac, Mac mini, Mac Pro, and Apple App Store as infringing products. Regarding domestic industry, Motorola states that it has made significant investments in plant and equipment, as well as in the engineering, research and development, and licensing of the asserted patents and of articles protected by the asserted patents.  Motorola also states that is has made a significant employment of labor and capital relating to the asserted patents.  As for the technical prong of the domestic industry requirement, the complaint asserts that at least one claim of each of the asserted patents reads on the Motorola CLIQ, CLIQ XT, Droid, Droid 2, and/or Droid X. As to related litigation, Motorola states that, concurrently with the filing of the instant ITC complaint, it also filed suit against Apple in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois alleging infringement of the ’333, ‘862, ‘697, ‘317, ‘223 and ‘826 patents.  Motorola also states that it had previously asserted the ‘333 and ‘317 patents against Research In Motion Limited and Research In Motion Corporation (collectively, “RIM”) at the ITC in an investigation styled Certain Wireless Communications System Server Software, Wireless Handheld Devices and Battery Packs, Inv. No. 337-TA-706.  The 706 investigation was terminated on June 29, 2010, as a result of a settlement agreement between the parties.  Additionally, the ‘317 and ‘223 patents had been the subject of lawsuits against RIM in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Texas, but those cases were dismissed in June 2010 as well. With respect to potential remedy, Motorola requests that the Commission issue a permanent exclusion order and a permanent cease-and-desist order directed at Apple and its subsidiaries, related companies, and agents.
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Broadcom and Global Locate File Enforcement Complaint In Certain GPS Devices (337-TA-602)

By Eric Schweibenz
|
Oct
12
On October 8, 2010, Broadcom Corporation and Global Locate, Inc. (collectively, “Complainants”) filed an enforcement complaint in Certain GPS Devices and Products Containing Same (Inv. No. 337-TA-602) against SiRF Technology, Inc. of San Jose, California (“SiRF”), CSR plc of England (“CSR”), MiTAC International Corporation of Taiwan and MiTAC Digital Corporation of Santa Clara, California (collectively, “MiTAC”), Mio Technology Limited, USA of Freemont, California (“Mio”), E-TEN Information Systems Co., Ltd. of Taiwan (“E-TEN”), and Pharos Science & Applications, Inc. of Torrance, California (“Pharos”) (collectively “Respondents”) for alleged violations of a limited exclusion order (“LEO”) and cease and desist orders (“CDO”) previously issued by the ITC. By way of background, on January 15, 2009, the ITC found a violation of Section 337 by several of the Respondents and issued an LEO and several CDOs.  The ITC’s final determination was appealed to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit, and the court affirmed the ITC’s findings.  See our April 12, 2010 post for more details.  On April 22, 2010, the Respondents filed a petition seeking modification of the ITC’s LEO and CDOs pursuant to Commission Rule 210.76.  On May 10, 2010, the Complainants also filed a petition seeking modification of the ITC’s remedial orders.  On August 16, 2010, the ITC issued a notice of institution of modification proceedings.  In the notice, the ITC determined that the “Respondents’ petition complies with 19 U.S.C. 19 U.S.C. § 1337(k)(2) and 19 C.F.R. § 210.76(a), but that Complainants’ petition does not.”  However, the notice also stated that Complainants “might find a formal enforcement proceeding under Rule 210.75(b) a more suitable avenue to address its concerns.”  See our September 20, 2010 post for more details. The complaint alleges that Respondents and their affiliates violated the ITC’s January 15, 2009 LEO and/or CDO by (a) marketing and advertising, (b) importing and selling for importation into the United States, and/or (c) aiding and abetting other entities in the importation, sale for importation, sale after importation, transfer or distribution of GPS devices and products containing same in the United States, which infringe one or more claims in U.S. Patent Nos. 6,606,346, 6,651,000, 7,158,080, 6,704,651, 6,417,801, and 6,937,187 (collectively, the “asserted patents”).  According to the Complaint, each of the asserted patents addresses problems relating to GPS signal and/or data processing. The Complaint further alleges that SiRF and its parent CSR manufacture several lines of GPS chips that continue to infringe one of more of the asserted patents, and that such chips are further incorporated into personal navigation devices, personal digital assistant products, and other GPS products of Respondents Mio, MiTAC, E-TEN, and Pharos. The Complaint states that several of the Respondents have alleged that certain of the accused GPS devices have been redesigned so that they no longer infringe the asserted patents. In the event the requested enforcement proceeding finds a violation of the ITC’s LEO and/or CEO, the Complaint requests relief that includes the imposition of civil penalties pursuant to 19 U.S.C. 1337 (f) in the amount twice the value of goods imported or sold, or $100,000, whichever is greater, for each day the Cease and Desist Order is violated, modifying the ITC’s CDO and LEO to include additional affiliated parties and to expressly include in their scope purportedly redesigned GPS devices and products, and to issue permanent CDOs against Respondents and their affiliates from engaging in illegal activities.
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Numark Files New 337 Complaint Regarding Certain Electronic Device Mixer Apparatus

By Eric Schweibenz
|
Oct
19
On October 18, 2010, Numark Industries, L.P. of Fort Lauderdale, Florida (“Numark”) filed a complaint requesting that the ITC commence an investigation pursuant to Section 337. The complaint alleges that Dj-Tech Limited of Hong Kong (“Dj-Tech”) unlawfully imports into the U.S., sells for importation, and sells within the U.S. after importation a certain electronic device mixer apparatus for use in the audio disc-jockey music industry that infringes U.S. Registered Trademark No. 2,402,458 (the “asserted trademark”). According to the complaint, the asserted trademark is directed to DJ IN A BOX® and covers “apparatus for transmission and/or reproduction of sounds, namely, audio mixers, phonographic record players, headphones and compact disc players.” In the complaint, Numark alleges that Dj-Tech imports and sells a product that infringes the asserted trademark.  In particular, the complaint alleges that Dj-Tech is currently using the designation “USB DJ IN A BOX” in connection with an electronic device music player with a performance mixer and jog wheel that is being offered for sale and sold by importation into the U.S.  According to the complaint, Dj-Tech is:  (i) using a confusingly similar, if not the same, asserted trademark in commerce; (ii) intentionally deceiving the consumer by copying the asserted trademark and otherwise passing itself off as a Numark product; (iii) capitalizing on the goodwill established by the asserted trademark; and (iv) engaging in a campaign of wholesale appropriation of the asserted trademark. Regarding domestic industry, Numark states that it has made significant investments in physical operations, employment of labor and capital, and exploitation of the asserted trademark.  The complaint states that Numark first placed a product bearing the asserted trademark into commerce in the summer of 1998 and has been selling products bearing the asserted trademark through retailers, distributors and the Internet.  According to the complaint, Numark continues to invest resources into its physical plants and equipment so that it is able to manufacture products and upgrades to products sold under the asserted trademark. With respect to potential remedy, Numark requests that the Commission issue a limited exclusion order and a permanent cease-and-desist order directed at Dj-Tech.
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Rovi Files New 337 Complaint Regarding Certain Products Containing Interactive Program Guide And Parental Controls Technology

By Eric Schweibenz
|
Oct
21
On October 20, 2010, Rovi Corporation, Rovi Guides, Inc., and United Video Properties, Inc. — all of Santa Clara, California — and Index Systems, Inc. of the British Virgin Islands (collectively, “Rovi”) filed a complaint requesting that the ITC commence an investigation pursuant to Section 337. The complaint alleges that Toshiba Corp. of Japan, Toshiba America, Inc. of New York, New York, Toshiba America Consumer Products, L.L.C. of Wayne, New Jersey, and Toshiba America Information Systems, Inc. of Irvine, California (collectively, “Toshiba”) unlawfully import into the U.S., sell for importation, and sell within the U.S. after importation certain products containing interactive program guide (IPG) and parental controls technology, including televisions and digital video recorders, that infringe U.S. Patent Nos. 6,020,929 (the ‘929 patent), 6,305,016 (the ‘016 patent), and 6,701,523 (the ‘523 patent) (collectively, the “asserted patents”). According to the complaint, the asserted patents are generally directed to IPG and parental controls technology.  In particular, the ‘929 patent is directed to a system and method for displaying interactive program guide data with television programming.  At least a portion of the program guide data display has a perceived partial transparency, which allows viewers to partially see television programming through the program guide data display.  The ‘016 patent is directed to a system for displaying program guide data with a perceived transparency over a selected television channel and methods for simultaneously presenting information (or alternatively, a computer-generated image using digital data) with a television program, where the information is displayed with a perceived partial transparency.  Finally, the ‘523 patent is directed to a system and method for restricting access to television programs.  A display depicts a two-dimensional matrix composed of rows and columns of tiles.  The rows (or columns) correspond to the overall program rating and the columns (or rows) correspond to specific program content indications.  A viewer may use an input (e.g., remote control) to highlight and select a tile.  Television programs are blocked or allowed for viewing based on the program ratings and specific content indications of the rows and columns corresponding to the highlighted tiles. In the complaint, Rovi alleges that Toshiba imports and sells products that infringe the asserted patents.  In particular, the complaint names 19 Toshiba television series and 5 Toshiba digital video recorder models as infringing products. Regarding domestic industry, Rovi states that a domestic industry exists for the asserted patents as a result of Rovi’s substantial investment in the exploitation of the asserted patents, including licensing efforts.  Rovi asserts that in relying on licensing activities to establish domestic industry, Rovi does not need to satisfy the technical prong of the domestic industry requirement.  Rovi also states that several licensees of the asserted patents practice the claimed inventions and have made and/or are making significant investments in labor or capital in the U.S. As to related litigation, Rovi states that while the asserted patents have not been the subject of any other U.S. litigation, a counterpart European Patent (EP0757873) has successfully been litigated in Europe, resulting in a judgment of infringement against Sharp Electronics GmbH and Europe-wide licenses by Toshiba Europe GmbH and TechniSat Digital GmbH.  However, EP0757873 has since been revoked by the European Patent Office following opposition proceedings — the revocation is currently on appeal.  Additionally, Ravi states that requests for ex parte reexamination of the ‘929 patent, the ‘016 patent, and U.S. Patent No. 5,828,420 (parent of the ‘929 and ‘016 patents) were filed by third party requesters in September 2010. With respect to potential remedy, Rovi requests that the Commission issue a permanent general exclusion order, a permanent limited exclusion order, and a permanent cease-and-desist order.
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