U.S. Patent 6,212,547 — It’s not over ’til it’s over, but …

maybe it IS over?

I first encountered the ‘547 patent, “UTP based video and data conferencing” in 2004, when Avistar was challenging Polycom, and I asserted then that ‘547 should not have been granted. Three years ago, Microsoft filed for ex parte re-examination of ‘547. I speculated that ‘547 would not survive re-examination.

Last week, the U.S. PTO Board of Patent Appeals and Interferences issued a decision on appeal, affirming in part the examiner’s final rejection of all claims of ‘547.

Intellectual Ventures can appeal further, but maybe they will not.

From the decision’s conclusion:

“The Examiner established that the combination of Ensor, Ahuja ’88, Ahuja ’90, and known prior art renders obvious:

1. separate data and video paths arranged over unshielded twisted pair (UTP) wires as required by claim 1;

2. the limitations as required by claims 4 and 5; and

3. a combined mosaic video image as required by claim 10.

“The Examiner did not establish that the combination renders obvious:

4. a system capable of the transporting audio and visual (AV) signals over a UPT (sic) AV path and reproducing spoken audio and visual images based on the AV signals, as required by claim 11.”

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