CSIRO scores early win for WLAN patent

Permission and licence fees sought

The CSIRO has had an early win in a US court case to be paid royalties for its wireless network technology for which it was granted a US patent in 1996.

Judge Davis of the eastern district of Texas in the US Federal Court granted summary judgment in favour of CSIRO yesterday with regard to the patent's validity, according to the CSIRO.

Davis also granted summary judgment that the defendant, Buffalo Technology, had infringed CSIRO's patent.

CSIRO chief executive Dr Geoff Garrett said the summary judgment is an important win because the judge has "supported CSIRO's position comprehensively".

"We are obviously very pleased; however, it is only a brick in the wall [and] CSIRO still has a long way to go," Garrett said in a statement.

Garrett said the market for wireless LAN (WLAN) products is large and growing, and many manufacturers are using CSIRO's technology without permission or any licence fee.

In February last year CSIRO filed a test case for patent infringement against Buffalo Technology and its Japanese parent.

Garrett said that he hoped that the court would determine a reasonable royalty rate shortly.

Other court cases relating to CSIRO's US WLAN patent are continuing.

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