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Core Wireless Licensing S.A.R.L. v. Apple Inc.

Reference to “Advantageously” Performing Operation Did Not Mean Claims Covered Non-Performing Designs

Core Wireless Licensing S.A.R.L. v. Apple Inc., (Fed. Cir. Apr. 14, 2017) (O’Malley, BRYSON, Wallach) (E.D. Tex.: Gilstrap) (2 of 5 stars)

Fed Cir affirms noninfringement verdict. Core Wireless’s patent related to means for sending packet data from a handset to the network on a selected channel. The district court did not err in application of its claim construction at JMOL. Properly construed, Core Wireless’s claims required that certain channel selection be by the handset, not the network. The opinion discusses the claim construction evidence in detail, and rejects Core Wireless’s argument that the construction entered by the magistrate judge and district court did not require such channel selection by the handset. “The problem with Core Wireless’s theory is that the entire point of the invention is to enable the mobile station [handset] to make the channel selection decision . . . .” Slip op. at 10. The limitation at issue was a means-plus-function limitation, and the structure identified by the district court worked in this manner (with the handset making the channel selection). The opinion rejects Core Wireless’s contention that such was only a preferred embodiment. A reference in the specification to performing channel selection in the handset “advantageously” did not mean that the claim covered embodiments where channel selection was performed elsewhere. Under this construction, there was sufficient evidence to sustain the jury’s noninfringement verdict.

KEYWORDS: CLAIM CONSTRUCTION; INFRINGEMENT (NO); MEANS PLUS FUNCTION