You have to love patent trolls. Wi-LAN is a well known one that specifically buys up patents to sue companies with until they agree to licensing it. According to Wi-LAN RIM infringes on one of their patents for Bluetooth data transmission and another for the “SYM” key (Symbol key) on newer BlackBerry keyboard devices. Seriously Wi-LAN has a patent on hitting a key and selecting symbols from a list of available symbols.
Check out the two patents for yourself at the USPO:
- Patent 5,515,369 Method for frequency sharing and frequency punchout in frequency hopping communications network
- Patent 6,232,969 Device for composing or editing a string of characters
As you probably know I am not a big fan of software patents but only time will tell how this one will go. Oh and the best part is that the reason Wi-LAN, a Canadian company, is suing RIM in Florida is because RIM has their BlackBerry World conference there for the last six years. Better yet Wi-LAN just opened up their Florida office last week… via FinancialPost
Here is Wi-LAN’s press release about the lawsuit:
WILAN FILES PATENT INFRINGEMENT SUIT
OTTAWA, Canada – January 23, 2012 – Wi-LAN Inc. (TSX:WIN) (NASD:WILN) and its wholly-owned subsidiary Wi-LAN USA, Inc. (collectively “WiLAN” or the “Company”) today announced that it has filed suit in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida against Research In Motion Limited and Research In Motion Corporation (collectively “RIM”) for patent infringement.
In its filing, WiLAN asserts that RIM is infringing U.S. Patent No. 5,515,369 and U.S. Patent No. 6,232,969.
WiLAN, founded in 1992, is a leading technology innovation and licensing company. WiLAN has licensed its intellectual property to over 255 companies worldwide. Inventions in our portfolio have been licensed by companies that manufacture or sell a wide range of communication and consumer electronics products including 3G and 4G handsets, Wi-Fi-enabled laptops, Wi-Fi and broadband routers, xDSL infrastructure equipment, cellular base stations and digital television receivers. WiLAN has a large and growing portfolio of more than 3000 issued or pending patents. For more information: www.wilan.com.
All trademarks and brands mentioned in this release are the property of their respective owners.