At our next SoCal IP Institute meeting on Monday, December 12, 2016, we will discuss the following:
Apple Inc. v. Ameranth. (Fed. Cir. November 29, 2016) (available here). In this appeal, the Court reviewed the Patent Trial and Appeal Board decisions in three Covered Business Method (“CBM”) reviews. Ameranth argued for a substantial evidence standard of review, but the Federal Circuit applied a de novo standard. The decision addressed the subject matter eligibility of certain claims of U.S. Patent Nos. 6,384,850, 6,871,325, and 6,982,733. The Ameranth patents’ specifications disclose a menu that has categories and items, and software that can generate a second menu from the first menu by allowing categories and items to be selected. Ultimately, the Federal Circuit affirmed the Board’s decisions finding certain claims unpatentable under § 101, and reversed the Board’s decisions confirming the patentability of certain claims under § 101. Thus all claims regarding Ameranth’s electronic menus were found unpatentable under § 101.