infoTECH Feature

November 14, 2008

Calypso Wireless Claims T-Mobile's [email protected] Infringes on Patent, Files Lawsuit

In the U.S. it’s no uncommon for a company to utilize the court system when it feels a competitor is not playing fairly — especially when a disagreement revolves around a patent. That’s exactly the tact being taken by Calypso Wireless, a developer and licensor of fixed mobile convergence (FMC) technology, in response to actions taken by T-Mobile USA.
 
Calypso claims that Deutsche Telekom AG’s T-Mobile (News - Alert) subsidiary, a nationwide provider of mobile communications services in the U.S., is infringing upon a patent with its [email protected] product, which lets subscribers switch seamlessly between cellular GSM networks and local WiFi (News - Alert) “hotspots.”
 
The patent in question is #6,680,923, which describes “A system and method for establishing communication with any one of a variety of different wireless communication devices including through the provision of a short range transceiver assembly so as to provide data communication from a sender to the wireless communication device either over the Internet, utilizing an Internet access facility, such as a computer, or alternatively using an over-the-air network, compatible with the communication device.”
 
Coupled with Calpyso’s proprietary Automatic Switch of Network Access Points (ASNAP) technology, the system described in the patent “helps carriers achieve more efficient allocation of resources by freeing more wide area cellular spectrum space for voice, video and data, and increasing overall bandwidth available to other users,” Calypso said in a statement released Friday.
 
The company went on to explain that its switching technology represents the convergence of cellular and WiFi networks, allowing users to seamlessly switch between these two methods of connectivity.
 
Taking T-Mobile to task for its alleged overstepping, Calypso has filed a patent infringement lawsuit (case 2:01-cv-00441) in the U.S. District Court of the Eastern District of Texas in Marshall, Texas.
 
Calypso is seeking past and future damages from T-Mobile, along with attorney’s fees and in an injunction preventing T-Mobile from selling or manufacturing the inventions “embodied in the ‘923 patent.”
 
“Calypso has invested significantly in the discovery, development and continued advancement of FMC,” said Richard Pattin, Calypso’s president, in a statement. “When others make use of our patented technology, we will continue to take aggressive action including the enforcement of our legal rights.”
 
Pattin added that the lawsuit represents a turning point for Calypso, and the company anticipates the outcome will result in hundreds of millions of dollars in future licensing opportunities.
 
For this lawsuit, Calypso is represented by Williams Kherkher Law Firm in Houston, Texas.
 
As of mid-day Friday (Eastern Time), T-Mobile had not yet publicly commented on Calypso’s claims or the lawsuit.
 
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Mae Kowalke is senior editor for TMCnet, covering VoIP, CRM, call center and wireless technologies. To read more of Mae's articles, please visit her columnist page. She also blogs for TMCnet here.

Edited by Mae Kowalke
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