Tokyo, June 2014, Canon announced the successful conclusion of a patent infringement lawsuit against Printronic Corporation, which does business under the names of Printronic. com and InkSmile .com , in the US District Court for the Southern District of New York, concerning certain toner cartridges and photosensitive drums units sold for use in Canon and Hewlett- Packard laser beam printers.
To resolve the lawsuit, Printronic has stipulated to a consent Judgment and Permanent Injunction from the Southern District of New York, which prohibits Printronic from making, using, selling, or offering for sale in the US, and from importing into the US, the toner cartridges and photosensitive drum units that Canon accused of infringing its US patents Nos. 8,135,204, 8,280,278, 8,369,744, 8,433,219, 8,437,669, 8,494,411, 8,565,640, 8,630,564, 8676,090, 8,682,215 and 8,688,008
Throughout the development, sales, and marketing process, Canon respects the intellectual property of other companies and individuals and expects others to similarly respect Canon’s intellectual property rights. Canon remains committed to pursuing legal enforcement against those who do not respect Canon’s property."
This now means two of the 33 respondents in the US has settled their lawsuit by agreeing not to import, make or sell, use or offer toner cartridges that are affected by Canons 11 US patents. Provantage LLC, who was sued in February and Printronic Corporation sued in May, of this year, have capitulated quickly presumably to minimize the ongoing cost of defending lawsuit litigation. This now leaves 40 other companies to decide their correct course of action. Stand and defend or capitulate and minimize costs.
The question is will we see a challenge to the Canon patents being made by one of the larger, better-financed companies. Ed O’Conner, (IP Litigation lawyer) suggested at the recent R T Imaging Summit in Las Vegas, that the industry needs to stand and fight, that the patents are weak and an abuse of the patent system. But who has the pockets to follow his suggestion?