With the Research in Motion Q2 earnings call and the thought of new devices taking the forefront in the BlackBerry news world, we didn’t notice that on the 28th of September, the U. S. Patent and Trade Office rejected the last of eight patents issued to NTP, the Virginia based holding company that has been entrenched in legal battles with RIM for years.
I don’t normally report how Research in Motion does in the market each day but I am definately interested in seeing how RIM fairs today, after a 9% dip yesterday. 5 of the now 8 patents overturned built the foundation for the patent infringement rulings in NTP’s favor against RIM.
In a 106-page ruling written by three senior examiners, the Patent Office cited two main reasons for its rejection. First, it cited a patent filed by RIM co-founder and CEO Mike Lazaridis in 1998 that predated NTP’s patent application from 1999. “That Patent Office is saying that it was not NTP that had invented this, but that it was RIM,” says RIM attorney Long. Second, it cited other work dating to 1986 and 1989 by Norwegian telecommunications concern Telenor, that predates the NTP patents.
With these patents being rejected, NTP will have to appeal the Patent Office’s rulings without making any changes to the claims. Making changes to the claims would give RIM grounds to argue for a new Trial. The last thing NTP wants to do have to retry the case. RIM has already filed a petition for the re-hearing of the case at the federal circuit court based on the rejections by the Patent Office of NTP’s patents. RIM has stated that they will take this battle all the way to the U. S. Supreme court if needed.