I’m still reading and digesting the Solaia decisions. There were two decisions. The first denied Solaia’s motion for a summary judgement against ArvinMeritor and Rockwell Automation for patent infringement on the ‘318 patent. The second decision granted ArvinMeritor and Rockwell summary judgement that they did NOT infringe on the ‘318 patent.
So, after collecting over 30 license fees, and advertising an agreement with GE Fanuc designed to spread FUD, Solaia appears to have lost. It is unknown at this time if they will appeal, or if they will continue to sue Rockwell’s customers, or if they will now fold up their post office box office and steal quietly away.
Their entire strategy was to avoid this decision at all cost, since once Rockwell got standing in court, it was clear that the patent would lose. See Steve Kuehn’s article in the April CONTROL for all the background.
This is hopefully a setback, along with the Lemelson patents, for the “patent trolls.” The strategy of suing for infringement of a dubious patent, and then offering to go away if an amount of money is paid that is significantly less than the cost of defending the suit is NOT extortion…because all the lawyers say it isn’t.
But it isn’t defending intellectual property either.