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Tq Delta, LLC v. Dish Network LLC

United States Court of Appeals, Federal Circuit

July 10, 2019

TQ DELTA, LLC, Appellant
v.
DISH NETWORK LLC, Appellee

          Appeal from the United States Patent and Trademark Office, Patent Trial and Appeal Board in No. IPR2016-01470.

          Rajendra A. Chiplunkar, McAndrews, Held & Malloy, Ltd., Chicago, IL, argued for appellant. Also represented by Peter J. McAndrews, David Z. Petty.

          Heidi Lyn Keefe, Cooley LLP, Palo Alto, CA, argued for appellee. Also represented by Jennifer Volk, Reston, VA; Stephen R. Smith, Washington, DC.

          Before Newman, Linn, and Wallach, Circuit Judges.

          WALLACH, CIRCUIT JUDGE.

         Appellee DISH Network ("Dish") sought inter partes review ("IPR") of claims 6, 11, 16, and 20 ("the Challenged Claims") of Appellant TQ Delta, LLC's ("TQ Delta") U.S. Patent No. 8, 611, 404 ("the '404 patent"). The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office's Patent Trial and Appeal Board ("PTAB") issued a final written decision finding, inter alia, that the Challenged Claims are unpatentable as obvious. See DISH Network LLC. v. TQ Delta, LLC, No. IPR2016-01470 (P.T.A.B. Feb. 7, 2018) (J.A. 1-38).

         TQ Delta appeals. We have jurisdiction pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1295(a)(4)(A) (2012). We affirm.

         Background

         Entitled "Multicarrier Transmission System with Low Power Sleep Mode and Rapid-On Capability," the '404 patent relates to the field of "multicarrier transmission systems." '404 patent col. 1 l. 31. "Multicarrier transmission systems provide high speed data links between communication points[ and have recently been used] . . . for communications over the local subscriber loop that connects a telephone service subscriber to a central telephone office. . . ."[1] Id. col. 1 ll. 37-41. The '404 patent generally describes a method for "establishing a power management sleep state in a multicarrier system" and efficiently waking up a transmission system utilized on hardware, such as a computer, from sleep mode. Id. col. 1 ll. 32-33; see id., Abstract. The process involved when the transmission system is first powered up prior to sleep mode is referred to as "full . . . initialization." Id., Abstract. Specifically, the '404 patent describes the invention "in the context of an ADSL system having a first transceiver located at the site of a customer's premises," referred to as the "CPE transceiver," as well as "a second transceiver located at a local central telephone office" referred to as the "CO transceiver." Id. col. 3 ll. 63-67 (internal quotation marks omitted). The '404 patent explains that "since the CPE transceiver and CO transceiver are very similar, the invention [is] explained in connection with a detailed illustration of the CPE transceiver only." Id. col. 4 ll. 11-13. Generally, in DSL systems, "a pair of transceivers communicate with [each] other by dividing the overall bandwidth of the channel interconnecting the subscriber and the central office into a large number of separate subchannels, each of limited bandwidth, operating in parallel with each other." Id. col. 1 ll. 48-52.

         Independent claim 6 is illustrative and recites:

         An apparatus comprising a transceiver operable to:

receive, in a full power mode, a plurality of superframes, wherein the superframe comprises a plurality of data frames followed by a synchronization frame;
receive, in the full power mode, a synchronization signal;
transmit a message to enter into a low power mode;
store, in a low power mode, at least one parameter associated with the full power mode operation wherein the at least one parameter comprises at least one of a fine gain parameter and a bit allocation parameter;
receive, in the low power mode, a synchronization signal; and
exit from the low power and restore the full power mode by using the at least one parameter and without needing to reinitialize the transceiver.

Id. col. 10 ll. 29-43 (emphasis added).

         Discussion

         TQ Delta challenges the PTAB's claim construction on the basis that the PTAB violated TQ Delta's procedural rights by relying on a new claim construction, see Appellant's Br. 25-29, and improperly construed the "without needing to reinitialize" limitation, see id. at 29-36. TQ Delta also argues the PTAB's finding of obviousness is not ...


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