Patent appeal decision could affect future wireless lawsuits


MCLEAN, Va.-A precedent-setting ruling from the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit in Washington, D.C., could change the course of ongoing and future patent infringement lawsuits afflicting the wireless industry.

In the E-Pass vs. Palm and 3Com patent litigation, the Federal Circuit decided that a California District Court judge was erroneous in deciding that E-Pass’ patent was limited to a credit-card sized device and held that Palm’s personal digital assistants could infringe the E-pass patent.

Similar litigation against Microsoft Corp. and Compaq (now Hewlett-Packard Co.) had been stayed pending the Federal Circuit decision and will likely resume in the coming months. In addition, E-Pass now expects to file additional patent infringement actions.

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