Saturday, July 27, 2013

USPTO Confirms Validity of U.S. Patent No. 6,314,420, Which Vringo Asserts Against Google

On July 24, 2013, the USPTO issued a Notice of Intent to Issue Ex Parte Reexamination Certificate confirming the validity of all claims of U.S. Patent No. 6,314,420 (the '420 patent) that were challenged by Google. Despite the great results many are getting sometimes ex parte reexamination may not work as expected and could bolster the validity of the challenged patent.

For details see Vringo announces that USPTO confirms validity of the '420 patent asserted in litigation with AOL, Google, et al.

If you want to see the reexamination papers, please click on USPTO PAIR, select the control number button, and enter the control number: 90/009,991.

Some tend to place considerable importance on such reexamination decisions. In USPTO Checkmates Google Over Vringo Patents Seeking Alpha claims Google is in trouble. Really did it lose it's rights to appeal? What is at stake? You say a billion dollars? You may remember the jury upheld the validity of the '420 patent as well as another US Patent No. 6,775,664, and awarded the former owner I/P Engine $30.5 million based on a reasonable royalty of 3.5%. Why the relatively high royalty rate but modest damages given Google's scale? I discussed this in Vringo v. Google - Laches Dashing Expectations - From $493M to $31M. Let me say if unreasonable delay in bringing a patent infringement suit prejudices a defendant, a court can rule no damages accrued before the suit was filed.

Seeking Alpha claims Larry Page settled with Yahoo on the Adword related patents in 2004, but somehow bought the wrong patents. This is a silly argument. Most think Google was smart to license the Yahoo patents right before its IPO. Based on this ex parte reexamination decision, Seeking Alpha suggests Google should quickly buyout Vringo at $5-7/share before others realize Vringo is worth way more. It's funny, you disclose you are long and you will say quite a bit to "help out" your hope. Vringo's shares may have jumped this week because of the USPTO notice, but I expect the shares may settle back down as investors realize this ex parte reexamination decision hasn't resolved this dispute.

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