Eastman Kodak has lost an appeal of a patent dispute over digital image preview technology with Apple and Research In Motion. This sets back the company's undertaking to raise money in bankruptcy through intellectual property sales.
On January 14, 2010, Kodak filed a complaint with the ITC alleging that RIM's camera-enabled products infringe Kodak's '218 patent. On May 21, 2012, Judge Pender reaffirmed the earlier finding of then-presiding Chief Judge Luckern that Kodak's '218 patent is invalid. Kodak requested that the full Commission review and modify that finding, but instead the ITC made final the decision that the Kodak '218 patent is invalid.
“The investigation is thus terminated,” the ITC said.
"RIM is pleased that both former ITC Chief Judge Luckern and ITC Judge Pender, and now the full Commission, have confirmed that the Kodak '218 patent is invalid," said Barbara Parvis, RIM Vice President of Litigation. "RIM respects the valid intellectual property rights of other companies, but will vigorously defend itself against improper claims."
However, Kodak refuses to give up—probably because it can't afford to.
“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 January 19. It expects to hold a patent auction in August.