Blog

24 Mar 2017

New data indicates NPE litigation boom in Germany, while China's potential begins to show itself

Recent research from IP analytics firm Darts-ip has identified China and Germany as the two major patent jurisdictions in which NPEs enjoy the most success in infringement proceedings. However, the relatively low volume of cases being filed by NPEs in China suggests that significant monetisation activity is still some way off – though there are already signs that it is picking up. The Darts-ip study looks at lawsuits filed by NPEs in several major jurisdictions outside of the Read more

Jack Ellis

23 Mar 2017

Latest SCOTUS ruling gives patent owners mild cause for optimism; while former USPTO chief slams Breyer

We’re currently seeing a flurry of patent activity from the Supreme Court. Earlier this week it heard oral arguments in Impression Products Inc v Lexmark International while it also released its opinion in SCA Hygiene Products Aktiebolag v First Quality Baby Products. Then on Monday the eight justices will hear arguments in the eagerly anticipated TC Heartland LLC v Kraft Food Group Brands LLC, - a case focused on venue selection in patent suits, which could undermine the Eastern Read more

Richard Lloyd

23 Mar 2017

Beijing IP Court slaps Sony Mobile with injunction based on SEP infringement

In what appears to be the first SEP-based injunction issued by a Chinese court, the Beijing IP Court on Wednesday morning ordered Sony Mobile to halt manufacture and sale of 35 mobile devices. The Japanese company was found to have infringed a patent held by Xi’an Iwncomm (sometimes known by its Chinese name Xi’an Xidian Jietong) that is relevant to the WLAN Authentication and Privacy Infrastructure (WAPI) standard, a Chinese counterpart to WiFi. According to Xinhua, the case Read more

Jacob Schindler

21 Mar 2017

As IV increases its rate of patent sales, more of the assets it divests are ending up in court

A few weeks ago this blog covered Intellectual Ventures’ disposal of its former Kodak portfolio to Dominion Harbor. We revealed that not only was it IV’s biggest ever sale but that the firm also retained some interest in the patents, with it set to receive a portion of any profits Dominion makes from them in a classic privateering-style play. IV’s head of licensing Cory Van Arsdale also confirmed that the business has been selling at a far greater rate in the last year or Read more

Richard Lloyd

21 Mar 2017

New data suggests that Japanese courts continue to be deeply unfriendly to patent owners

Recent statistics published by the Supreme Court of Japan seem to underline the old adage that the country’s courts are among the least patentee-friendly among the world’s major IP jurisdictions. But there may be more to the figures than meets the eye. The Supreme Court’s report into patent litigation trends for the years 2014-2015 is based on data from the district courts of Osaka and Tokyo – the two venues with competency to hear complex technology IP cases Read more

Jack Ellis

20 Mar 2017

Korean sovereign patent fund Intellectual Discovery gets a new boss, but questions remain over its future

Korean sovereign patent fund operator Intellectual Discovery (ID) has new leadership in place following the abrupt departure of CEO Kwang Jun Kim, first reported by this blog last October. Media reports name the new president and CEO as Jung Dong-soo, a former patent executive with SK Hynix. Jung, a professor at Seoul National University, was previously a managing director in the patent department of major Korean chipmaker Hyundai Electronics, with his career there continuing through the Read more

Jacob Schindler

18 Mar 2017

Ericsson is right to embrace licensing transparency, but the company now has to make it work

Ericsson has revealed its standard essential patent (SEP) royalty fee price range for 5G mobile phone networks. In an interview published on Bloomberg yesterday, chief IP officer Gustav Brismark stated that charges would begin at $2.50 for lower-end handsets, rising to $5 for those at the top of the range. “We believe by setting a price that’s reasonable, it would serve as a reference to other patent holders and to other companies that need to take a license,” Brismark is Read more

Joff Wild

17 Mar 2017

Flashback Friday – former Soverain Software patents reappear in lawsuits against Microsoft and Apple

A few years ago Soverain Software was in and out of the patent headlines thanks to its knock down, drag out infringement fight with consumer electronics retailer Newegg. In a story familiar to readers of this blog, Soverain was held out as a bad boy of the tech world for seeking to assert its IP through the courts - with opponents and critics in the press insisting that it was not a product company but a “patent troll”. Representative Bob Goodlatte even cited the company during Read more

Richard Lloyd

17 Mar 2017

The inside take on IBM’s hybrid patent sales strategy and how it helps to create value for Big Blue

Last week, the IAM blog ran a story which examined the role that IBM – or, at least, its patent portfolio – has played in some of the most high-profile tech IPOs of recent times. As my colleague Richard Lloyd reported, six out of the 10 largest US IPOs by valuation – including Snap’s $3.4 billion floatation earlier this month – involved companies that had purchased patents from Big Blue. Snap bought around 250 US patent assets from IBM in late 2015, back Read more

Jack Ellis

16 Mar 2017

As it celebrates its 10th birthday, AST looks beyond the US and anticipates an upswing in patent prices

Defensive patent aggregation firm AST celebrates its 10th birthday this year at a time when it is on something of a roll. Last year, the firm successfully coordinated IP3, which, in a first for the market, brought together a group of operating companies to offer patent owners a quick and efficient way of selling their rights. It has also started to expand its reach into new markets in Asia; relaxing its rules around buying portfolios so they no longer need to include a US grant. Read more

Richard Lloyd

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Issue 82