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Posts Tagged: "Internet of Things"

Tips for Litigating Multiple Simultaneous Patent Infringement Investigations at the ITC

Global concern regarding climate change is forcing all industries to evaluate energy consumption and seek out ways to do more using less energy. For example, LED lighting fixtures achieve significant energy savings compared with older lighting methods. At the same time, technological advances now make it possible to communicate with and control electronic devices from anywhere at any time. Often referred to as the Internet of Things, or IoT, consumers now have the ability to control virtually any device in the home using a computer or smartphone, including lighting, appliances, and climate systems. Among the numerous benefits provided by IoT, enhanced control can reduce unnecessary use, thus conserving energy. As IoT and LED use becomes more widespread, intellectual property protecting these technologies has become increasingly valuable. This has led to a dramatic increase in litigation asserting such IP in district courts across the country as well as another popular forum for IP litigation, the U.S. International Trade Commission (ITC).

Standard Essential Patents and Legal Risks Across Industries

The next industrial revolution will not only impact the smartphone and computer world but will spread to many more industrial verticals. Automotive, manufacturing, energy, health care, and MedTech are among the industries most likely to be impacted by connectivity, as they have high-value equipment that is constantly networked and needs to handle massive amounts of data. Standards such as 5G or Wi-Fi 6 (802.11ax) will connect industrial machinery and robots allowing for remote control, monitoring, and repair, as well as industrial automation. From smart grids to drone control, energy and utility, companies will rely on standards to handle massive data. Connectivity standards will be used by hospitals and medical equipment manufacturers to provide data to a variety of tablets and fixed machines, as well as to enable remote surgery. Enhanced monitoring and automation are likely to assist industries as diverse as agriculture and finance. Online shops will increasingly turn to virtual reality experiences. 5G based tracking will emerge in the logistic sector. Edge computing and low latency of 5G and the improved compression of the versatile video coding (VVC) standard will be used in the gaming business, as well as in general augmented and virtual reality applications. As transportation operators rely on connectivity standards to connect smart city infrastructure, media companies will boost mobile streaming speeds and quality. Over the next few years, when advanced cellular, wireless and video standards replace existing protocols, these developments will occur swiftly.

Computing on the Edge of a Pandemic: Rethinking Legal and Compliance Functions in a Rapidly Evolving Network Technology Architecture

On the heels of a global pandemic where safety requires that we socially distance and work from anywhere, demand is exploding for innovation to adapt to this new way of living. Our new environment will require more and more computing power to migrate to the edge of the network. Computing power housed in data centers and cloud environments is moving closer to end-users and devices in edge computing centers. Eventually, fueled by ubiquitous 5G+ connectivity bandwidths, one can foresee the migration of computing power to the very edge of your interconnected devices. Technology is racing forward to meet the challenges and exploit new opportunities. Ethical questions will need to be answered to regulate through the evolving network technology architecture. Corporate legal functions will need to adapt and partner with product managers to ensure compliance.

Patent Trends Study Part Two: IoT Industry

In yesterday’s article, we introduced our patent-trends study (performed in a collaboration between Kilpatrick Townsend and GreyB Services) and provided high-level data across industries. Today’s article pertains to the Internet of Things (IoT) industry. With the prevalence of WiFi, cellular modems and devices configured for short-range connections, IoT systems are becoming all the more ubiquitous and exciting. No matter how powerful and sophisticated a single device is, its efficiency and usefulness will very often remain capped if it cannot “talk” to other devices. Only through these communications can the device gain a more comprehensive view (e.g., corresponding to where users are, what computations or controls may be helpful, what computations or actions other devices are already performing or coordinating). Thus, we can begin to start thinking about specifications (e.g., efficiency, speed, memory, accuracy) of a device and instead think about specifications of a system. This presents a large number of important use cases.

Qualcomm, Google, Verizon and Industry Reps Gather for Women’s High-Tech Coalition Women of Wireless Dialogue

On February 13, global policymakers and technology company representatives gathered in Washington, D.C. at Google’s offices for the Women’s High-Tech Coalition (WHTC) Third Annual “Women of Wireless” dialogue. The speakers represented companies including Google, Verizon, and Qualcomm, as well as major industry organizations such as the Cellular Telecommunications and Internet Association (CTIA) and the Consumer Technology Association (CTA), and discussed the various infrastructure, policy, and privacy challenges facing the industry in the race to 5G-implementation. With a record number of women elected to the 116th Session of the U.S. Congress and recent White House Executive Orders on technology issues— including this month’s “Maintaining American Leadership in Artificial Intelligence (AI),” an expected executive order on 5G technology, and likely Congressional briefings and hearings focused on wireless innovation—the WHTC is an integral network of stakeholders to discuss these issues and to develop opportunities for strategic partnerships and shared initiatives.

Managing Trademark Clutter in a Busy IoT World

The default position of brands has often been to protect as many marks as possible, driving other applicants out and helping establish a well-known and profitable identity. When names can make or break a brand, a significant number of trademarks are created purely for protection. However, these protective practices lead to a systemic problem. When new entrants to a market are faced with trademark clutter, their only choice is to adopt equally aggressive application strategies. This behavior leads to more clutter and further reduces the available pool of marks for the next generation of applicants.

California Ahead of Federal Government in Cybersecurity for the Internet of Things

The bill would create a new title within California Civil Code named Security of Connected Devices. The first part of this title would require a manufacturer of a connected device, defined as any object capable of connecting to the Internet and assigned either an Internet protocol address or a Bluetooth address, to equip the device with reasonable security features appropriate to the nature and function of the device, appropriate to the information it may collect or transmit and designed to protect both the device and the information it contains from unauthorized access.

Qualcomm Reaches Settlement With Taiwan Free Trade Commission Wiping Out Most of $773M Antitrust Penalty

On Thursday, August 9th, San Diego, CA-based semiconductor developer Qualcomm Inc. announced that it reached a mutually agreed settlement with the Taiwan Fair Trade Commission (TFTC) which greatly reduces the financial penalty assessed to Qualcomm by the TFTC for antitrust issues. Although the TFTC will retain about $93 million USD in fines which have been paid by Qualcomm through July, the settlement eliminates the remainder of the original fine valued at $773 million USD and issued by Taiwan’s fair trade regulator last October.

Tech Giants Lead the Way on Fintech Patents, Ahead of Banks

British patent data insights firm Cipher recently released an IP strategy report that provides a look at how many firms are patenting technologies in the hopes of disrupting various industry sectors. Among the various highlights of the report include a look at fintech patents, which shows that tech companies and not banks are leading the way in obtaining patents that cover the future of banking.

Understory Earns U.S. Patents for Weather Sensing Technology

Understory’s first patent covers the sensor device itself which consists of a stainless steel sphere sitting on top of a shaft, a configuration which one of the sensor’s designer called “God’s joystick.” “The sensor detects microdeflections from rain or hail pushing on the joystick,” Kubicek said. Such measurements take place on the order of 50,000 times each second and algorithms processed at the device separates each microdeflection into a data point which can be sent to a cloud-based network of weather data… One has to wonder though whether the Federal Circuit and Supreme Court, when they might get their hands on these patents, will find them to be directed to nothing more than an abstract idea. After all, sensing the weather has been done since at least the dawn of recorded history.

When Kids’ Toys Are Listening, the FTC is Watching

Chinese toymaker VTech recently settled charges with the FTC in the first-ever case involving internet-connected toys. VTech became a victim of cyber attackers back in 2015, when hackers got access to the company’s online database and compromised accounts of over 11 million, which included data for about 6.37 million children… Today, the key to compliance when dealing with IoT is to “know thyself,” Bahar explained. In other words, take the time to understand what truly is in these smart components, not only from a technical perspective but a legal one. In addition, make sure to make good on your promises. If you tell consumers that you are protecting their data or their privacy in certain ways, make sure you are making good on that commitment.

Cisco’s IoT Blockchain Merely Scratches the Surface of Distributed Ledger Technologies

The invention improves authentication of devices operating on the Internet of Things, while also detecting anomalies in device sensors. This IoT blockchain innovation merely scratches the surface of distributed ledger technologies… However, cryptocurrencies are but one application for blockchain as is highlighted by the recent Cisco activities in IoT blockchain development. Although the distributed nature of blockchain makes it a great fit with IoT platforms, where many devices have to interact with each other in secure ways, it’s just one of many sectors which could be greatly impacted by further blockchain development according to Raina Haque, founder of Erdos Intellectual Property Law + Startup Legal.

Protecting Your Intellectual Property in the Internet of Things

The Internet of Things (IoT) has been upon us for some time now, though many are just beginning to see it — the interconnected network of devices that increasingly surrounds us. We actually welcomed the first personal IoT device a while ago in the smart phone, a device whose functionality depends on its connection to a cellular network or the internet. Imagine the impact your phone has had many times over — with billions of interconnected smart devices — and you get a sense of the IoT’s expected scale… Unfortunately, protecting your IP in the IoT is likely to be both more complicated and lead to more patent infringement lawsuits than ever before.

Alice Who? Over Half the U.S. Utility Patents Issued Annually are Software Related!

I have always argued that software patent eligibility is a must in a country where patent rights are guaranteed by the Constitution. That is, all fields of innovation should be treated equally under the law such that one field of endeavor (e.g., pharmaceuticals or electronics) is not deemed more “patent worthy” than other fields (i.e., computer science and information technology). This is especially true when one considers how important software is to the U.S. economy… A substantial amount of U.S. commerce is software-dependent and the associated innovation in the field – when novel and non-obvious – deserves stable and predictable patent law protection!

Microsoft, Toyota announce new licensing agreement for connected car IP

The licensing agreement, which covers patents directed at connected car technologies, is the latest partnership between these two companies seeking to increase entertainment and autonomous tech platforms within vehicles.,, In recent months, Microsoft has been ramping up licensing programs seeking to encourage the use of its patented technologies by auto manufacturers. At this year’s Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, the company announced the Microsoft Connected Car Platform, a development platform for connected car technologies using the Azure cloud.