From: Sally Khudairi (email@example.com)
Date: Mon Dec 11 2000 - 17:47:38 PST
This makes absolutely *no* sense to me. If the IPR hostage situation isn't
their main revenue source, as they claim, and they're so concerned with
their image, why even bother? US and Japan but not Europe? Bizarre.
>Geoworks says that if it were to lose its claim, its
>credibility would suffer more than its bottom line
>because the intellectual property rights (IPR) program
>is a very small part of its overall business - its main
>thrust is technology solutions and services.
>Geoworks' patent is enforced only in the US and Japan.
>European companies are not required to license the
>technology to build WAP applications.
Geoworks patent claim 'no threat to WAP'
GMT Dec 11, 2000, 06:03 PM | ET Dec 11, 2000, 01:03 PM | PT Dec 11, 2000,
London - The president and chief executive of Geoworks Dave Grannan
describes as "asinine" commentators who claim the future development and
success of wireless application protocol (WAP) software will be threatened
if its complaint before the US International Trade Commission (ITC) is
The US software vendor is claiming that companies selling WAP technology are
infringing its patent and has filed to protect its intellectual property.
Grannan believes the money Geoworks is seeking from companies wanting to
license its patent is "fair and reasonable".
The ITC is not expected to make a decision until September, but Geoworks
stands to make millions of dollars because 52 million WAP handsets are
expected to be shipped in the US by 2004, according to researcher the Yankee
Geoworks' technology is the flexible user interface (FlexUI) that allows
text to be viewed differently when screen sizes vary. The licensing program,
declared to the WAP Forum in May 1999, charges handset makers using WAP or
wireless markup language (WML) about $20,000 per year, and browser makers,
such as OpenWave, $1 per end-user per year - or 10% of WAP-related revenues.
Geoworks claims that so far 12 companies, including Ericsson and Toshiba,
have licensed FlexUI.
It believes several companies, such as OpenWave (the new name for phone.com
after its recent merger with software.com) and handset manufacturer Sanyo
are violating its patent claim. Grannan claims the payment his company is
seeking for its patent will not hamper development. Companies already pay
the WAP Forum $25,700 a year for membership, he adds.
Geoworks says that if it were to lose its claim, its credibility would
suffer more than its bottom line because the intellectual property rights
(IPR) program is a very small part of its overall business - its main thrust
is technology solutions and services.
Geoworks' patent is enforced only in the US and Japan. European companies
are not required to license the technology to build WAP applications.
Meanwhile, Geoworks has five more wireless data patents including
split-proxy filtering software for security and encryption, data compression
and TCP/IP protocol optimization to minimize data transmissions and improve
wireless network throughput.
They originate from the summer acquisition of AirBoss Wireless Systems from
Telcordia Technologies (formerly Bellcore). It has not ruled out the
possibility that its patents could appear as part of its intellectual rights
program, used in a cross-licensing arrangement or as part of Geoworks'
product line. The patents are already included in its AirBoss products.
AirBoss's wireless technology and services are being integrated into
Geoworks' line of mobile communications products, its enterprise offering
and mobile site, which allows existing Web content to be converted for
Grannan said its AirBoss technology was more than just another transcoding
solution to get web content onto several wireless devices. "Transcoding is
very limited," he said. Geoworks says it uses sub-optimized techniques that
separate application logic from dynamic front-end code for each wireless
device. The technology customizes content for each device, he said.
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