Fed. Circ. Revives Plantronics Earbud Patent Suit

Law360, New York (July 31, 2013, 2:27 PM EDT) -- The Federal Circuit on Wednesday revived headset maker Plantronics Inc’s patent infringement suit against Aliph Inc. over Bluetooth earbud technology, ruling that a lower court declared the disputed patent obvious too quickly.

The appeals court said the lower judge had found Plantronics’ patent was an obvious combination of pre-existing technologies before properly considering the so-called objective evidence of nonobviousness.

This kind of evidence — like previous inventors' failed attempt to combine the prior art, or that Aliph had profited by copying the patent — had been considered only as a type of supplemental review after the judge already had declared the...

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