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Posts Tagged: "Amazon.com Inc"

Does an Uncertain Patentability Climate Explain the Stormy Environment for IPOs?

If Snap cannot protect its ability to differentiate its platform, how is it going to compete with a rival that has more resources and a larger base of distribution? If Facebook and Snap compete on user experience, and that experience is essentially the same between both, there’s no way for Snap, the smaller player, to gain any sort of competitive advantage… An analysis of U.S. capital markets published last May by Ernst & Young noted that the decline of IPO activity over the past 20 years has been so significant that it has warranted conversations on policy action to reverse the trend. A restoration of patent rights, which gives a patent owner a reasonable ability to obtain and enforce patents, could very well have the positive impact desired to improve the business climate for IPOs.

Daimler trademark lawsuit alleges that Amazon.com doesn’t do enough to prevent infringement and counterfeits

At issue in the trademark infringement suit is Amazon’s sale of counterfeit wheel center caps bearing distinctive Mercedes-Benz trademarks… Daimler argues that Amazon “facilitates the sale of an exorbitant number of counterfeit and infringing goods” through its platform, counterfeit activity which has increased since 2015 when the company began inducing Chinese manufacturers to list on its U.S. and European e-commerce platforms. Daimler notes that lawsuits over counterfeit products have been filed against Amazon by well-known consumer brands including a February 2017 suit filed by French luxury goods brand Chanel against the American e-commerce giant.

From underwater storage to drones, what is Amazon’s patent strategy?

At first sight Amazon´s patent portfolio is indeed remarkable, with respect to its total value as well as its development over time: the total value of the company’s patent portfolio shows a strong over-proportional growth within the past six years. Starting 2010 with about 550 patent families and € 130m, the patents have reached a total value in September 2016 an impressive total sum of € 1,15b with 4,162 alive patent families. For a company being recognized as a retailer this is indeed remarkable and shows the trend of being more and more a high tech company. This can be seen within their strong increase of total patent portfolio value but also the technical analysis.

The High Tech Inventors Alliance: The newest institution of the efficient infringer lobby in D.C.

Eight tech companies owning a collective 115,000 patents announced the establishment of the High Tech Inventors Alliance (HTIA), an organization they claim is “dedicated to supporting balanced patent policy.” According to coverage by Congressional blog TheHill, the formation of the HTIA is intended to further debate on Capitol Hill over patent reform… The members of the alliance are your typical “Who’s Who” of the efficient infringer lobby… Every member of the HTIA, including Adobe, Cisco, Oracle and Salesforce.com all lobbied on issues related to the Innovation Act.

‘Move Fast and Break Things’ decries IP behavior of Internet giants

Move Fast and Break Things, subtitled How Facebook, Google and Amazon Cornered Culture and Undermined Democracy, dissects the inordinate power of a handful of the popular, primarily Internet companies and those who run them, and its impact on culture, innovation and personal freedom. What Taplin does best is to connect the dots, distinguishing between true break-through ideas and the ability to simply profit from data and dominate markets by making content and information more widely accessible. His analysis reveals how a combination of bold vision, oversized ego and enormous wealth have resulted in undermining the rights of a wide range of people and businesses, and pillaging whole industries.

Uniloc files patent suits against Amazon and Google for conference call, VoIP technologies

Plano, TX-based security tech provider Uniloc USA recently filed a pair of patent infringement suits in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Texas (E.D. Tex.) in which Uniloc asserts a series of patents directed at conference call and voice over Internet (VoIP) technologies. The defendants, Alphabet Inc. (NASDAQ:GOOGL) Internet services subsidiary Google and e-commerce giant Amazon.com (NASDAQ:AMZN), are the latest targets in a series of suits Uniloc has filed in the past year… Past Uniloc suits involving the above patents have been filed against Facebook Inc. (NASDAQ:FB), Cisco Systems (NASDAQ:CSCO), BlackBerry Corporation (NASDAQ:BBRY), Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) and Snapchat, now Snap Inc. (NYSE:SNAP). Uniloc’s suit against Google is the fourth suit involving patents in the litigation campaign and the third filed against Google since the beginning of March.

How tech’s ruling class stifles innovation with efficient infringement

Efficient infringement causes distress and agony for innovators struggling to survive,, and widespread efficient infringement absolutely stifles innovation… Innovators today patent their technologies in the hopes of licensing to a tech company but recent legislation from Congress, most notably in the form of the America Invents Act of 2011 (AIA), has increased the difficulties of asserting patent rights. In this environment, it becomes economically viable for a large company to simply copy what it can from available technologies it hasn’t developed instead of actually licensing that technology.

Copyright litigation in 2016 saw rise in textile plaintiffs, decline in file sharing cases

The most active defendants in copyright lawsuits include department store chain Ross Stores, Inc. (NASDAQ:ROST), which was named as a defendant in 276 cases. Following Ross Stores are a series of retailers: TJX Companies, Inc. (NYSE:TJX), named a defendant in 123 cases; Amazon.com Inc. (NASDAQ:AMZN), a defendant in 84 cases; Burlington Coat Factory (NYSE:BURL), a defendant in 74 cases; and Rainbow USA Inc., a defendant in 66 cases. Except for Amazon, these are primarily off-price department stores offering brand name goods at discounted prices. Music publishers like Universal Music Group, Inc. (65 suits) and education publishers like Pearson Education, Inc. (NYSE:PSO) (50 suits) are also among the top defendants in copyright cases.

Affinity Labs of Texas loses two patent eligibility cases at the Federal Circuit

Affinity Labs of Texas, LLC, lost two cases at the Federal Circuit last week, both in decisions authored by Judge Bryson, which Chief Judge Prost and Judge Wallach joining the opinions. Although the patents at issue in the two cases were different, they shared a similar specification. In the DirecTV decision, the Federal Circuit followed the Alice/Mayo framework and found the claims patent ineligible. Perhaps of note, the Court rebuffed Affinity’s arguments regarding novelty, explaining patent eligibility does not turn on novelty of the claims. In the Amazon decision the Federal Circuit ruled that basic user customization is insufficient to qualify as inventive under Mayo and Alice.

Push for online sales tax continues at state and federal levels

Some states have decided that they can’t wait for a federal response on the collection of online sales tax, prompting them to enact their own measures. In Utah, where less than one percent of taxpayers actually pay the use tax they owe the state for Internet retail transactions, some state lawmakers have collaborated on crafting a bill that would give the state more power in collecting sales tax from online retailers, with or without a physical presence within the state. In South Carolina, January 1st of this year brought about the end of a tax break offered to Amazon for building a distribution center in that state. The collection of sales tax from Amazon sales to South Carolina consumers is expected to bring in about $13.8 million in additional tax revenue through 2016, according to projected revenues released by South Carolina’s tax department. The distribution centers built by Amazon serve as the physical in-state nexus which requires it to collect sales tax from South Carolina consumers.

Innovation A, B, C’s: Amazon, Boehringer and Chevron Disrupt World’s Top Innovator List

According to Thomson Reuters 2015 list of Top 100 Global Innovators, Amazon and several other established players in mature markets are proving that it’s not just start-ups that have the potential to upend traditional business models and reinvent our world. In fact, several of the companies new to this year’s ranking of top innovators have been around a lot longer than Amazon, among them: Boehringer Ingelheim, Chevron, Exxon Mobil, Johnson Controls, Thales, and Yamaha.

The Top 10 Patents Issued in 2015

2015 was a truly remarkable year for innovation and we saw major trends in self-driving cars, wearable technologies, digital wallets and much more. I hope you will enjoy this top 10 listing, which includes innovations for providing water in arid regions, wireless charging systems for electronic devices and even the collection and retransmission of sunlight. Of course, as with all of these types of lists, the criteria used for inclusion on this list is subjective, based on my own personal preferences. Please feel free to let us know if you saw something particularly noteworthy in 2015.

Black Friday, Cyber Monday results prove that e-commerce continues to make gains

As bleak as the picture looked for brick-and-mortar retail, it was much brighter for e-commerce and online retail, which saw their best day ever. According to global analytics firm comScore, 2015’s Cyber Monday saw $2.28 billion in online spending from desktop computer users, the heaviest day of online spending ever recorded and an increase of 12 percent over last year’s Cyber Monday results. When including sales from mobile device consumers, Cyber Monday sales surpassed $3.1 billion.

Amazon.com seeks patent on sense and avoid for automated vehicles

The research and development activities at Amazon have been strong in recent years and in 2014, the company placed 59th among all companies earning patents from the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, receiving 741 in that year; this was nearly 40 percent greater than the number of U.S. patents earned by Amazon in the previous year. During the third quarter of 2015, Amazon earned 321 U.S. patents, a quarterly pace of innovation that would far outstrip its 2014 totals… Amazon has also jumped into the world of autonomous vehicle R&D with the filing of U.S. Patent Application No. 20150277440, entitled Sense and Avoid for Automated Mobile Vehicles. This system, which could be incorporated on air, water or ground-based vehicles, is meant to keep unmanned vehicles from colliding with each other, a technology which has been heavily sought by the drone community in response to concerns by federal regulators.

Amazon hiring 100,000 seasonal workers, reflects role of e-commerce in holiday retail

Retailers always top the list of seasonal and holiday hiring sprees but one of the largest employer of seasonal workers the past few years doesn’t own a single brick-and-mortar retail establishment. That would be e-commerce giant Amazon.com, Inc. (NASDAQ:AMZN) of Seattle, WA. In 2014, the Internet retailer announced that it would hire 80,000 seasonal workers during last year’s holiday season. In 2015, Amazon has upped that number to 100,000 workers that it plans to employ on at least a temporary basis. This makes Amazon the single largest employer of seasonal workers during 2015, ahead of United Parcel Service, Inc. (NYSE:UPS) and its 95,000 holiday hires.