S&C Pretrial Win Brings Philips, TDF, IRT and Audio MPEG One Step Closer to Trial

February 3, 2017

In a step bringing S&C's clients closer to trial, S&C successfully represented MP3 patent owners Philips, TDF, and IRT‎, and Audio MPEG, which licenses those patents, in a two-day claim construction hearing in a patent infringement action against Dell Inc., which has sold unlicensed computers capable of playing MP3 audio files. 

At the hearing, the court heard arguments on the construction of 15 separate claim terms. Judge Henry Morgan of the Eastern District of Virginia ruled in favor of the MP3 patent owners on nearly all the issues in dispute. Judge Morgan ruled in the plaintiffs' favor on the construction of six of the seven claim terms that were not phrased in “means-plus-function” format. For the remaining eight “means-plus-function” claim terms, Judge Morgan rejected all of Dell's arguments that those terms were indefinite (which would have resulted in a ruling that those claims were invalid).

The decision allows the MP3 patent owners to proceed to trial, which is scheduled for April 5, on all of the claims that the plaintiffs have asserted against Dell.

The S&C team representing the MP3 patent owners at the hearing included Garrard Beeney, Marc De Leeuw and Stephen Elliott. The team also includes Matthew Porpora and Rudy Kleysteuber.