Affinity Labs of Texas, LLC v. Amazon.com, Inc. et al.

Affinity Labs of Texas, LLC v. Amazon.com, Inc. et al., Appeal No. 2015-2080, --- F.3d --- (Prost, Bryson, Wallach, Circuit Judge) (Sept. 23, 2016)

Patent(s):

  • 8,688,085 | Entitled, "System and Method to Communicate Targeted Information"

Disposition:               

Affirmance of judgment on the pleadings that claims of the patent are not eligible for patenting.

Abstract Idea:

Yes

Something More:

No

Technology:              

Streaming of user-selected content to a portable device.

Summary:                 

The Federal Circuit determined that the basic concept of customizing a user interface is an abstract idea despite the fact that the claims recited physical components. It noted the district court’s statement that the specification made clear that the physical components recited in some of the claims merely provide a generic environment to carry out the classifying and sorting of digital images in an organized manner. The Federal Circuit rejected the argument that wireless streaming of media was not routine, conventional or well-known as of the patent’s priority date and found that the “specification describes the function of streaming content to a wireless device, but not a specific means for performing that function.” It also rejected the argument that the claims recited a customized user interface and noted that the court had previously found that the customization of information based on information about the user is an abstract idea itself.

The Federal Circuit also determined that the claims failed to contain an inventive concept.  Specifically, it stated that the claim at issue required a “network based delivery resource” and then pointed to the specification which “makes clear’ that “any technology capable of wireless communication of audio information to the device would be covered.”