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Page 1 of 4 Archive - March 2012

Microsoft, ZTE, IP pure-plays, top US law firms for patent quality - all this and more in IAM 53

Issue 53 of IAM is now available to subscribers online. Our cover story focuses on the central role that IP played in the roll-out of Microsoft’s pioneering natural user interface device, Kinect. We were given access to some of the key figures involved in creating the product and developing the IP strategy that underpins it. The story once again confirms Microsoft’s place at the top table of companies which really how IP works and the huge advantages its strategic ...

Posted by Joff Wild, IAM Magazine on 30 March 2012 @ 2:11PM
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Buying patents might deter innovation, says former DoJ anti-trust chief

A quote that may lead a few in the US patent marketplace – buyers and sellers, NPEs and operating companies, intermediaries and aggregators – to raise their eyebrows. It’s from Christine Varney, until last year head of the US Department of Justice’s antitrust division and now a partner at law firm Cravath, Swaine & Moore. She was speaking to the Financial Times about what the newspaper calls “a new focus of enforcement – control of patents ...

Posted by Joff Wild, IAM Magazine on 29 March 2012 @ 5:33PM
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Huawei takes more hits over security concerns

Huawei has seen two major opportunities slip from its grasp in the past seven days. Earlier this week, the Australian government blocked the Chinese company from submitting a tender to provide the country’s new national broadband network. Yesterday, it emerged that California-based Symantec has terminated a joint venture between the two. Both let-downs are rooted in concerns about the telecoms company’s alleged links to the Beijing government and the Chinese military, and ...

Posted by Jack Ellis, IAM Magazine on 29 March 2012 @ 2:37PM
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It's time to tackle the great British patent malaise

The first patent was issued in what is now the United Kingdom in 1449 when King Henry VI of England gave John Utynam a 20-year monopoly on his method for making stained glass. The country’s current patent laws can trace their origins back to the reign of Queen Anne (1701-1714) and have formed the basis of patent systems across the world, including those of the US and most other common law countries. For its part, the UK Patent Office (now the UK IP Office) celebrates its 160th ...

Posted by Joff Wild, IAM Magazine on 27 March 2012 @ 5:56PM
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German voters once again embrace the IP-sceptic Pirate Party

Germany is Europe’s biggest and wealthiest market. According to the World Bank, in 2010 companies in the country received $14.384 billion in IP/intangible licensing royalties. The latest European Innovation Union Scorecard, meanwhile, describes Germany as an “innovation leader” with strong growth in licence and patent revenues from abroad. What’s more, German entities file and receive more European patents than those from any other European country. They also ...

Posted by Joff Wild, IAM Magazine on 26 March 2012 @ 2:22PM
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Investors get their wish as AOL hires investment bank to explore patent sale options

A month ago AOL’s board was the subject of an extraordinary attack from one of the company’s major shareholders over its lack of an IP strategy and failure to maximise the value of what was described as a “a robust portfolio of extremely valuable and foundational intellectual property”. More specifically, in a letter sent to the board on 24th February, Starboard Value LP, which owns 5.2% of AOL’s stock, identified a collection of “more than 800 ...

Posted by Joff Wild, IAM Magazine on 25 March 2012 @ 11:49AM
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Low grant rate is an indicator of quality, says EPO president; UK lags however you look at it

This morning I listened in on a press conference held to announce the release of the European Patent Office’s annual report for 2011. EPO president Benoît Battistelli stated that there were a record 244,437 filings at the office last year, an increase of 3.7% from 2010; grants rose by 6.9%. In total, 62% of applications came from outside of EPO member states, with Asian economies leading the way – Japan, China and South Korea accounted for 32% of EPO ...

Posted by Jack Ellis, IAM Magazine on 23 March 2012 @ 2:16PM
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IBM gives Facebook a helping hand, and covers its bases at the same time

News broke yesterday that IBM has sold 750 patents to Facebook. The move comes at a time when the social networking company, which is preparing for an IPO that could be worth as much as $100 billion, is coming under patent attack from a number of sources, most notably Yahoo! With this purchase, Facebook has dramatically increased the size of its patent arsenal – from a previous total which had included just 56 granted patents and just over 500 applications. The company will ...

Posted by Joff Wild, IAM Magazine on 23 March 2012 @ 12:07PM
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Marks & Clerk faces challenges as it launches pioneering IP valuation service in Europe

Over on World Trademark Review, IAM’s sister publication, editor Tevor Little has put together a fascinating piece about a pioneering move by Marks & Clerk, one of Europe’s biggest patent and trademark attorney firms, and one which also boasts a law firm under its group umbrella – Marks & Clerk Solicitors. In what the firm is calling a first for Europe, it has launched an IP advisory business operating out of London and Paris that will, among other things, ...

Posted by Joff Wild, IAM Magazine on 22 March 2012 @ 2:36PM
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US Supreme Court reverses Fedral Circuit finding in Prometheus case - UPDATED

In a unanimous decision in Mayo v Prometheus, the US Supreme Court has ruled that a diagnostioc patent granted to Prometheus covering a personalised medicine dosing system should not have been granted because its claims cover what are essentially laws of nature. Delivering the opinion, Justice Breyer writes: Because the laws of nature recited by Prometheus’ patent claims—the relationships between concentrations of certain metabo¬lites in the blood and the likelihood ...

Posted by Joff Wild, IAM Magazine on 20 March 2012 @ 6:28PM
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