Microsoft steps up Word battle

Microsoft has asked for a full panel of judges to review an appeals court decision upholding a $290 million jury verdict against it for infringing a patent held by i4i.

Microsoft steps up Word battle

The world’s largest software company wants all 11 judges of the US Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit, which handles many patent and trademark cases, to review the long-running case against Toronto-based i4i, in the hope of overturning the original judgment.

Microsoft appealed the case last year, but in December a panel of three appeals court judges rejected its arguments, and upheld the federal jury decision.

That jury ruled last August that Microsoft had infringed a patent belonging to i4i relating to text manipulation software in the 2003 and 2007 versions of Word, Microsoft’s word processing application.

Our position is unchanged. We expected them (Microsoft) to do this. We are confident we will prevail

The jury imposed more than $290 million in damages on Microsoft and the court granted i4i’s motion for an injunction preventing Microsoft from selling versions of Word containing the disputed technology.

That injunction was stayed while Microsoft appealed the case with the Court of Appeals, but it is now due to take effect on 11 January.

Microsoft said last month that it was working to adjust current versions of Word to comply with the injunction, and would continue that work despite its new appeal.

“Our position is unchanged. We expected them (Microsoft) to do this,” responds Loudon Owen, Chairman of i4i. “We are confident we will prevail.”

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