"the inventors had allegedly withheld known prior art references"
And, once again, we need the Courts to do the job of the Patent Office, which has transitioned from granting patents to just rubber-stamping them.
Typo Keyboards, the iPhone keyboard firm co-founded by TV host Ryan Seacrest, has hit back at patent infringement claims from BlackBerry, claiming that the Canadian company's intellectual property isn't even valid. Typo said in a court filing that the patents BlackBerry is trying to assert against the firm over its attachable …
Well, I can't quite see how you can blame the Patent Office for that particular problem. They can only deal with prior art that they are aware of (and any search can't be fully complete). From the facts given (and I personally wouldn't trust these without a lot of extra legwork), they are accusing Blackberry of hiding documents from the patent office. It's like blaming you for innocently eating that cake in the fridge, even though you didn't know it was meant for the mother in law.
And the law relating to this in the US has recently changed - your patent can only be invalidated if you wilfully and deliberatly withheld the prior art documents. Mere accidental non compliance with sending in all known prior art documents no longer results in invalidity of the patent.
@Mr Anonymous (why does that word always look mispelled..... anyway)
AT&T's version of the BB Torch had a slider as well as touch kb's
For some reason, it never translated over to Verizon. Too bad too, it was pretty sexy ;)
BB aren't suing because they attached an external keyboard. They're suing because the external keyboard looks an awful lot like their keypad.
Seacrest claims to have spent millions developing their keypad. BB most likely did too. Sometimes the exact angle for part of a device is the key to how it works. If the sizes of each of the keys and the angles on all of them are the same BB might have a legitimate case if they spent millions to determine that was the best engineering solution. If I were sitting on a jury hearing the case and BB pointed out the similarity of the placement of symbols on the keypad, I would certainly consider that while weighing the evidence. I've used both android and apple tablet type devices and their keyboards are quite different. Quite honestly, apples' is crap as far as I'm concerned, but some people like it.
You are confused - patents NORMALLY reference other patents eg
Sony Ericsson's 2004 patent http://www.google.sc/patents/US7505796
MIcrosoft's 1998 patent http://www.google.sc/patents/US6359572
Apple's 1990 patent http://www.google.sc/patents/US5128672
which in turn lists
ITT's 1983 patent http://www.google.sc/patents/US4633227
and so on.
It's all up to the parties to sort it out - which, due to its stupid & arrogant investor, Type simply refused to do hence the lawsuit against them.
I have a family member who used to work for the patent office. Once they've worked for a certain period of time, their job becomes invulnerable. It becomes almost impossible to fire them. My family member told me stories of how his friend there gained that status and practically did no work anymore. He approved everything that came to him. EVERYTHING. His boss tried to avoid routing him work and begged him to try to reject patents but to no success.
This is the unfortunate reality of a broken system in our broken government that results in the countless expense we afford in taxes. There is a desparate need to tear down and rebuild the systems that operate our corrupt government.
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