* Patent covered digital image previewing in cameras
* Int'l Trade Commission found no infringement
* Kodak trying to sell patent portfolio, plans appeal
By Jonathan Stempel
July 22 Eastman Kodak Co has lost an
appeal of a patent dispute over digital image preview technology
with Apple Inc and Research In Motion Ltd,
which could set back the onetime photography giant's efforts to
raise money in bankruptcy by selling patents.
The U.S. International Trade Commission on Friday upheld a
May 21 ruling by Judge Thomas Pender of that agency that neither
Apple nor RIM had violated Kodak's rights in the so-called '218
patent, which covers how digital cameras preview images.
"The investigation is thus terminated," the agency said.
Kodak has been hoping to recover $1 billion, and said on
Sunday it plans an appeal to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the
Federal Circuit in Washington, D.C.
"The validity of the '218 patent has been upheld in previous
litigation at the ITC and was affirmed by the U.S. Patent and
Trade Office in the face of two separate challenges," it said.
"We are confident that its validity will ultimately be upheld."
Kodak filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection from
creditors on Jan. 19. Patent litigation has in recent years been
a major part of the Rochester, New York-based company's strategy
to generate revenue.
Apple's products include the iPhone, while RIM makes the
Last month, Kodak won bankruptcy court permission to sell
more than 1,100 digital imaging patents, roughly one-tenth of
its patent portfolio, to help repay creditors as it shifts its
business focus toward printing.
These patents are part of Kodak's digital-capture portfolio
for devices such as digital cameras, smartphones and tablets.
That portfolio has generated more than $3 billion in revenue
Kodak has said it expects to hold the auction early next
Shares of Kodak closed Friday at 26 cents on the Pink
The ITC case is In re: Certain Mobile Telephones and
Wireless Communication Devices Featuring Digital Cameras, and
Components Thereof, U.S. International Trade Commission, No.
337-TA-703. The bankruptcy case is In re: Eastman Kodak Co et
al, U.S. Bankruptcy Court, Southern District of New York, No.