Nokia and Lenovo settle patent dispute, Apple wins $506 Million patent-damages appeal and more

In this week’s news: Nokia and Lenovo settle patent dispute over video compression technology; Apple wins appeal against $506 Million patent-damages awarded to it earlier; USPTO announces special Patents for Humanity COVID-19 category; USPTO launches COVID fast-track appeals pilot program

Nokia and Lenovo settle patent dispute over video compression technology

Nokia and Lenovo have announced a decision to settle a long-standing patent dispute relating to video compression technology. The dispute which began in 2019 with Nokia suing Lenovo across multiple jurisdictions around the world has come to an end after Lenovo agreed to pay an undisclosed sum to Nokia. The parties have also reportedly arrived at a cross-licensing agreement as part of the settlement.

Apple wins appeal against $506 Million patent-damages awarded to it earlier

A judge of the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Texas has overturned an earlier ruling against Apple, in which the tech giant was ordered to pay $506 Million as patent damages to Optis Wireless Technology. While ruling in favor of Apple, the judge expressed that the jury should have been allowed to consider whether Optis’ royalty demand was consistent with the requirement that standard-essential patents be licensed on “fair, reasonable and non-discriminatory,” or FRAND, terms. Invariably, the judge also criticized Apple for being an unwilling licensee and for intentionally deciding to remain wholly mute during the initial trial for fear that the jury would take note of the “potentially harmful evidence” regarding its positions during licensing negotiations.

USPTO announces special Patents for Humanity COVID-19 category

The United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) has announced that it will be launching a special category of its Patents for Humanity Program for inventions that address the COVID-19 pandemic. This new award category will provide business incentives for patent applicants, holders, and licensees whose inventions track, prevent, diagnose, or treat COVID-19.

More details about the program may be accessed on the USPTO’s official website, here.

USPTO launches COVID fast-track appeals pilot program

In furtherance of the COVID-19 Prioritized Examination Pilot Program launched by the USPTO last year, the USPTO has now launched a COVID fast-track appeals pilot program under which an appellant may have certain COVID-19-related ex parte appeals before the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB or Board) accorded fast-track status. Appellants can simply file a petition to request fast-track review of their COVID-19-related ex parte appeal—i.e., an appeal of an application that claims a product or process that is subject to an applicable FDA approval for COVID–19 use.  No petition fee is required to be paid.

To read more about the program, click here.

Authored by Gaurav Mishra

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