Landmark cases, Amazon’s interesting patent, Apple and Qualcomm dispute.


This weekly update on patents is brought to you by the Patent experts of BananaIP (BIP) Counsels. In this weeks patent news and updates we bring to you a Landmark case in patents, latest stats from the patent & designs office, an interesting patent granted to Amazon and much more. Happy reading!

Patent thought of the week:

“Grant is the beginning of the Patent Game, not its end.” – Dr. Kalyan C. Kankanala

Patent Stats:

Patent applications published by the Indian Patent Office between 11th February 2017 and 19th February 2017: 547
Patent applications granted by the Indian Patent Office between 11th February 2017 and 19th February 2017: 231
Designs registered by the Indian Designs Office between 11th February 2017 and 19th February 2017: 151

Interesting patent of the week:

Unmanned aerial vehicle delivery system 

Amazon, the e-commerce has been granted a patent for its unmanned aerial vehicle delivery system also known as drone delivery. This cool system of delivery is well summarized in the abstract of the patent as follows: This disclosure describes an unmanned aerial vehicle (“UAV”) configured to autonomously deliver items of inventory to various destinations. The UAV may receive inventory information and a destination location and autonomously retrieve the inventory from a location within a materials handling facility, compute a route from the materials handling facility to a destination and travel to the destination to deliver the inventory. The patent is numbered 9573684 and is set to be issued on 21st February 2017. As is often seen with Amazon, although it gets several patents awarded to it, many of them do not see the light of day. Assuming this one becomes a reality, don’t forget to pay the drone!

Patent cases update:

Landmark Case of the week

Hoffmann-La Roche Ltd vs Cipla Ltd.

In the later half of 2012, a landmark judgment was passed by the Delhi High Court in the case of F. Hoffmann-La Roche Ltd vs Cipla Ltd. relating to the Indian company’s generic version of the lung cancer drug Tarceva. Roche had filed the case against Cipla in January 2008, alleging that Cipla had infringed its patent by launching a generic copy of Tarceva in the local market. The Delhi High Court had initially rejected Roche’s appeal to grant interim injunction restraining Cipla from selling generic version of Tarceva. The Court based its decision on the grounds of public interest and the fact that there were ongoing patent revocation proceedings against Roche’s patented drug. Roche had then appealed to a division bench of the high court and later to the Supreme Court. But the case was sent back to the high court on the grounds that the decision on patent validity was awaited. The Delhi High Court, in its final decision rejected Roche’s plea for an injunction on Cipla’s product, considering the patent was due to expire in March 2016. However, Cipla was ordered to render accounts concerning manufacture and sale of Erlocip (cipla’s generic version of Tarceva) to determine profits made by them on account of infringement.

Government news & updates:

ESDS Software Solutions Pvt Ltd., a leading player in cloud service and technology was awarded ‘The Aegis Graham Bell Award’ by the government for its recognizable innovation in Cloud technology. The Business world reported that ESDS is amongst the few Indian companies to have done recognizable innovation in Cloud and to have created eNlight Cloud product which has American Patent for real-time auto-scaling of CPU ad RAM of virtual machines.

BananaIP (BIP) news & updates:

Attorneys at BananaIP deliver talks at NLSIU, Bangalore

The National Law School of India University, Bangalore recently organized a symposium on IP commercialization on the 15th February, 2017.  Attorneys at BananaIP delivered talks at the symposium that was composed of an audience including some leading IP experts in India, Government officials, academics and researchers.

Is it really time to break Patents in India?

Dr. Kalyan C. Kankanala in this post asked a simple question on whether it was really time to break patents in India. This post was in response to an article carried by the Hindu, a leading newspaper daily which questioned the patent system in India. You can read the full post by clicking here.

Patents: Understanding Software Inventions in India and US

 As part of our endeavor at BananaIP to help each other in the organization as well as those outside of the organization grow in terms of knowledge, we featured a post on how software inventions are pursued by the examiners in India and US. The subtle yet nuanced differences of software inventions are highlighted in this post. This interesting post authored by the Patent experts at BIP Counsels is a short introduction to a larger picture, one that applicants don’t seem to understand very often. To read the full post, click here.

Compulsory Licensing, Pharmaceutical Patents, TRIPs and Public Health: First Amendment to WTO comes into force

This post authored by Dr. Kalyan C. Kankanala speaks about the recent amendment to the TRIPs agreement that came into force on 23rd January, 2017, after 2/3rd members of WTO accepted it. The amendment facilitates supply of drugs to developing/least developed countries lacking pharmaceutical production capacity under a compulsory license. To read the full post click here.

Patent Licensing/Commercialization Updates

LES to Develop IP Standards

IAM’s blog has reported that Licensing Executive Society  (LES) has been accredited by the American National Standard Institute to develop standards for patent licensing, IP brokerage, IP protection, and so on. LES had initiated this activity two years back, and it will be interesting to see what they come up with and if the industry adopts them.

Apple and Qualcomm in a license dispute

Apple has sued Qualcomm in a California District Court alleging anti-competitive practices, refusing to pay rebates of about one billion dollars, and overcharging for its chip sets. It is noteworthy that Apple’s latest IPHONE 7’s chips were supplied by both Qualcomm and Intel, while its earlier device chip sets were supplied only by Qualcomm. The  chip sets are covered by Standard Essential Patents.

International Patent Updates

Apple’s patent invalidation attempt reversed by Federal Circuit

Patently-O reported that the US Federal Circuit rejected a holding of invalidity by the Patent Appellate Board, which held a patent granted to ‘Personal Web’ invalid based on Apple’s plea. The Federal Circuit was not convinced that the patent in question was obvious because the Appellate Board failed to particularly point out specific prior art elements that constituted the patent, and because no explanation with respect to why and how the prior art elements would be combined by a person with ordinary skill in the art was given. The patent in question relates to verifying whether a name with respect to a given data exists in a database before access is given. Indian Patent Office rarely gives any such explanations, and most orders will fall flat if  they are subject to the aforestated standards.

Indian Pharma Alliance is trying to  pull India out of the USTR IP Priority Watch List

Financial Express has reported that Indian Pharmaceutical Alliance (IPA) has written to the United States Trade Representative (USTR) making submissions to remove India from the priority watch list of the Special 301 report for 2017. India was placed in the list in 2016, and the IP system in India has seen positive changes since. The concerns with respect to Section 3d’s scope, compulsory licensing and enforcement have been allayed to a large extent, but it is unlikely that USTR will remove India from the list. What US wants is not just a robust IP system, but a system that confirms to its IP philosophy.

MIT protects its interests in Gene Editing patent Interference initiated by University of California-Berkeley

In what is envisaged to be a pathbreaking invention for the future of genetic research and therapy, MIT and University of California-Berkeley filed patents at USPTO. The inventions that are subject of the patent applications relate to CRISPR, which stands for clustered regularly interspaced short palindromic repeats, which enable gene editing. In an interference proceeding initiated by University of California-Berkeley, the USPTO held that University’s patent covers prokaryotic organisms and that MIT’s patent covers Eukaryotic organisms and that there is no conflict between the two patents. The patents are expected to fetch huge licensing revenues to the institutes owing to extensive commercialization possibilities they hold.

Blackberry sues Nokia for LTE and UMTS Network Patent Infringement

Blackberry has sued Nokia alleging infringement of 11 of its patents. The company is claiming that Nokia’s actions of encouraging and instructing customers to use standard compliant products to operate LTE and UMTS networks without a valid license infringes its patents. The remedy sought in the case is royalty for  implementing Blackberry’s patented inventions.

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