As you may know, last week a federal court in Dallas ruled that a patent asserted against Nintendo’s Wii Remote was not valid. The court said iLife Technologies Inc. was impermissibly trying to cover the broad concept of using motion sensors to detect motion. The ruling nullifies a $10.1 million jury award against Nintendo from 2017. But this ruling has broader implications for the gaming industry.
Ryan Meyer is an intellectual property attorney at the international law firm Dorsey & Whitney who specializes in IP and the gaming industry. Of the ruling he says,
Ryan Meyer says.
“The iLife ruling provides another example of the patent ineligibility of using conventional hardware to implement a conventional, abstract idea,”
“The iLife decision is a warning to patentees, particularly with respect to computer hardware-implemented inventions, that overly broad claims are more likely to be found to be patent ineligible. As a precaution, patentees should identify the most inventive features of their invention and draft at least some claims directed specifically to those features,”
“In similar cases, parties moving for summary judgment as to patent ineligibility should emphasize to the Court the benefits of deciding this dispositive issue before trial rather than in a post-trial judgment as a matter of law. However, if the Court declines to decide this issue before trial, a party should tailor its presentation to the jury to support its position on patent ineligibility,”
“Had iLife been more mindful of the inventive aspects of its technology when drafting its claims, this case might have ended much differently. As the Court noted, iLife’s patent arguably discloses a preferred embodiment with inventive features, but iLife’s asserted claim was found to be invalid because it fails to include any of those features,”
“iLife is procedurally interesting because, although Nintendo teed up the patent ineligibility issue in a motion for summary judgment, the Court waited to decide the issue as a post-trial judgment as a matter of law, without presenting it to the jury. The Court’s decision was partly based on expert and inventor trial testimony which emphasizes how evidence presented to the jury can affect even non-jury issues,”
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