Earlier this week, we caught up on summary judgment motions filed by both Microsoft and Motorola in advance of next month’s breach of contract jury trial, set to take place in Seattle.  Yesterday, both parties filed reply briefs in support of these motions:

It’s July (and brutally hot on the East Coast), so you’ll have to excuse us if we’re moving a little slower than normal catching up on all the SEP litigation going around.  Earlier this month we posted about submissions by Microsoft and Motorola concerning the meaning of the “duty of good faith and fair dealing,” specifically as it applies in RAND-encumbered standard-essential patent licensing.  Not surprisingly, the parties followed up these briefs with dueling summary judgment motions, seeking to narrow issues or even potentially completely eliminate the need for the breach of contract jury trial set to take place next month in Seattle.  Last week, the parties also filed their respective oppositions to these motions.  You can take a look at the parties’ motions and oppositions below — and after the jump, we’ll give a brief synopsis of the arguments that each is making.

13.07.03 (D.E. 727) Microsoft Motion for Partial SJ and 13.07.15 (D.E. 758) Motorola Response to MS Partial SJ Motion

13.07.03 (D.E. 720) Motorola Motion for SJ and 13.07.12 (D.E. 740) MS Response to Motorola SJ Motion


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Recently Apple explained to the ITC that many of the standard-essential patents asserted by Samsung against Apple have failed under the scrutiny of litigation, resulting in a finding of non-infringement or invalidity.  Well, Apple can now chalk up another SEP win on the board, although one that has nothing to do with Samsung.  Yesterday, Judge Sue Robinson of the U.S. District Court for the District of Delaware ruled on summary judgment that Apple does not infringe two patents alleged by Golden Bridge Technology to be essential to the 3G W-CDMA wireless telecommunications standard.

Golden Bridge is a noted non-practicing entity whose “primary business is the creation, licensing, and enforcement of Wideband CDMA technology and intellectual property.”  The company is involved in several lawsuits over its allegedly-essential cellular technology, and even brought (and lost) an antitrust case against several mobile device makers a few years back, where it had accused the mobile device companies of excluding Golden Bridge’s technology from the standard-setting process.
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gavelIn an order issued yesterday by the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Washington (that just hit the docket this afternoon), Judge James L. Robart granted Microsoft’s long-pending motion for partial summary judgment and invalidated thirteen claims of three patents Motorola alleged as essential to the AVC/H.264 video coding standard.  Although this ruling stems from the infringement portion of the case, and the major issues between the parties involve the RAND breach of contract claims brought by Microsoft over Motorola’s entire 802.11 and H.264-essential patent portfolios, it’s possible that Judge Robart’s ruling could have some future effect on these RAND claims as well.
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On November 29, Judge James L. Robart of the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Washington issued an order granting Microsoft’s motion for partial summary judgment and dismissing Motorola’s claims for injunctive relief. Judge Robart found that under the circumstances of the case – where the patents-in-suit were subject to a RAND licensing promise from Motorola, and where Microsoft sought enforcement of that promise in Judge Robart’s court – Motorola could not satisfy either the irreparable harm or inadequate remedies at law prongs of the eBay test. But the court’s order is even broader, barring any claims of injunctive relief that Motorola might seek against Microsoft with respect to any patents essential to the ITU H.264 video coding or 802.11 wireless networking standards.
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