Regulators decline to review validity of Gogo competitor’s patent

BROOMFIELD — The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office recently decided it would not honor a request by Gogo Inc. (Nasdaq: GOGO) to review the validity of a patent held by a competitor. Gogo, a in-flight broadband connectivity firm with a major business unit headquartered in Broomfield, petitioned the office this year to review SmartSky Networks LLC’s patent — referred to as U.S. Patent No. 9,312,947 or the ‘947 patent — that “relates to a broadband data communications system for in-flight aircraft,” according to PTO records. Gogo requested an inter partes review, which allows parties to challenge patents held for unoriginal, obvious or otherwise non-patentable inventions. The PTO’s Patent Trial and Appeal Board determined that Gogo has “not demonstrated a reasonable likelihood of prevailing in demonstrating that at least one challenged claim of the ’947 patent is unpatentable over the prior art of record.” SmartSky plans to launch it’s competing broadband network commercially next year.  “The market leader tried to undercut SmartSky, but justice has been served and the little guy has won this battle,” SmartSky president Ryan Stone said in a prepared statement. Gogo’s leadership, unsurprisingly, bemoaned PTO’s decision.  “We disagree with the PTO’s decision not to review the 947 patent,” Gogo business aviation president Sergio Aguirre said in a statement. “To be clear, Gogo reiterates our strong belief that we are not infringing any valid patent held by SmartSky.” Despite the setback, “neither the PTO’s decision nor SmartSky’s patent portfolio in any way impairs our ability to continue to successfully expand, to launch Gogo 5G or to enhance our position in the business aviation market,” Aguirre said.   © 2020 BizWest Media LLC
Source: BizWest

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