GODO KAISHA IP BRIDGE 1 v. TCL COMMUNICATION TECHNOLOGY HOLDINGS LTD.

GODO KAISHA IP BRIDGE 1 v. TCL COMMUNICATION TECHNOLOGY HOLDINGS LTD., Appeal No. 2019-2215 (Fed. Cir. August 4, 2020).  Before Prost, Newman, and O’Malley.  Appealed from D. Del. (Judge Bataillon). (Standard Essentiality, Infringement)

Background:

IP Bridge sued TCL for infringement of its patents related to mobile communication methods.  In asserting infringement, IP Bridge relied on the standard compliance methodology approved in Fujitsu Ltd. v. Netgear Inc., 620 F.3d 1321 (Fed. Cir. 2010), which held that a district court may rely on an industry standard in analyzing infringement.  According to that methodology, IP Bridge argued that the patent claims are essential to the Long-Term Evolution (“LTE”) standard and that TCL’s accused devices comply with the LTE standard, instead of showing that each element in the asserted claims is present in the accused devices.  The jury found that TCL was liable for infringement by selling LTE standard-compliant devices.  TCL appealed, arguing that IP Bridge could not rely on the standard compliance methodology because Fujitsu only approved that methodology in circumstances where the patent owner asks the district court to assess essentiality in the context of claim construction.

Issue/Holding:

Did the district court err in finding infringement based on the methodology approved in Fujitsu?  (continue reading)

Summary by:  Megan Doughty

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