Wednesday, November 22, 2006

Zune Patent Lawsuit Prediction

In Bits from Bill: Zune Patent Lawsuit Prediction, comes the prediction of more Microsoft patent issues. Because Zune has the Wi-Fi music sharing feature, Microsoft could be on the target list for patent infringement.
"The Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organization in Australia holds WiFi patents used by most routers and other wireless products. Until now they haven’t really had much control over their patents as Wi-Fi has became widely accepted. Last week a federal judge in Tyler, Texas ruled in favor of CSIRO in what essentially was a test case to uphold an eleven year old patent.

The defendant in this case was a company called Buffalo Technology which was instructed to pay $1.5–2 million dollars in damages to CSIRO. Buffalo makes the “AirStation” WiFi product line. Now that Buffalo has been ordered to pay I’m sure CSIRO will go after the guys with the real deep pockets."

It is interesting that Bill specifically points out that CSIRO's patent is eleven years old. There was an interesting conversation at LandzDown Forum about patents. One strongly-held contention by one of the participants is that patent life at 20 years from filing is much too long.

Click on over to Bits from Bill for links to other sources on this topic.

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