by Dennis Crouch
Adaptive Streaming Inc. v. Netflix, Inc. (Fed. Cir. 2020)
In this non-precedential determination, the Federal Circuit has affirmed the decrease court docket’s discovering that Adaptive’s asserted claims are ineligible under Section 101. In 2019, Adaptive sued Netflix in C.D. Cal. for patent infringement. Rather than submitting its reply, Netflix instantly filed a movement to dismiss for failure to state a declare. Fed. R. Civ. Pro. 12(b)(6). That movement was granted — case dismissed.
The patent claims a private broadcasting system that transcribes an incoming video right into a extra usable format. Us7047305 (1999 precedence date). I subscribed to Netflix again in 2001 — receiving rental DVDs within the mail every month. Netflix has modified dramatically — and one little bit of its course of seems to be a user-based translation engine.
Claim 39 at difficulty right here requires a “broadcasting server” coupled to a “processor” with the aptitude of transcoding an incoming video sign from a primary compression format right into a second compression format “more suitable” for the consumer gadget — and obtainable in a number of video stream outputs. A dependent declare contains the performance of fixing the compression output “in response to a change in bandwidth conditions.”
Abstract Idea: The district court docket recognized the summary concept right here as “collecting information and transcoding it into multiple formats.”
Directed To: With regard to what the claims are directed to, the court docket appeared to the written description coupled with the declare language to infer the “focus of the claimed advance of over the prior art.” (quoting Solutran (2019) and Affinity Labs 2016). Here, the court docket concluded that the main target of the invention is format conversion of incoming video. “The focus is not any specific advance in coding or other techniques for implementing that idea; no such specific technique is required.”
Something extra: The court docket provided a grade for the patent’s efficiency under Alice Step 2: “The claims also flunk the second step of the Alice inquiry.” In specific, the court docket notes the presence of “generic” parts finishing up its widespread operate recognized within the artwork. That much was admitted within the specification.
Patent Spec. Regarding novelty + obviousness, the court docket right here reiterated that satisfying these inquiries “does not imply eligibility under § 101, including under the second step of the Alice inquiry, because what may be novel and non-obvious may still be abstract.”
In its reply-brief, the patentee argued additionally that the business success of its invention ought to be used as proof of patent eligibility.
[C]ommercial success and trade recognition serves as proof that the know-how underlying the asserted patent is much from well-understood, routine or standard, and supports that the patent claims are directed to a technological answer to a technological drawback.
[Adaptive_Streaming_Inc._v._Net_21]. The court docket didn’t think about that argument – contemplating it forfeited as a result of not raised within the opening temporary.
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The patent right here was in the beginning owned by the dot com LUXXON, an organization developing streaming services. The patents have been then assigned to an offshore holding business Hutchison Mediator (Bahamas) as a part of an asset sale (a part of CK Hutchison Holdings). Then WI-LAN took possession and transferred rights to Adaptive Streaming, which seems to be an entirely owned subsidiary of WI-LAN (no less than no different business owns >10%).