Lawyer: $9.17 million award in patent case 'big win' for Saint Lawrence

By John Myers | Apr 25, 2017

MARSHALL – A Plano-based company was awarded $9.17 million after a jury found that telecommunications giant Motorola infringed its patents.

"This was a big win for Saint Lawrence," said Wesley Hill, partner, Ward, Smith & Hill PLLC in a press release issued by his law firm. "The finding of 'willful infringement' means that the final judgment amount could be triple the amount that the jury awarded. We are gratified that the jurors were able to sort through the evidence and come to this clear-cut conclusion."

On March 24, a jury awarded Saint Lawrence Communications LLC a victory in Marshall Division of the Eastern District of Texas.

The dispute was focused on a dispute over patents filed for U.S. Patents 6,795,805; 6,807,524; 7,151,802; 7,260,521; and 7,191,123. These patents revolve around a technology related to the audio compression capabilities used in cellular communications called Adaptive Multi-Rate-Wideband (AMR-WB).

AMR-WB plays a key role in a feature known as high-definition voice services for cellphones users. The feature is used to enhance sound quality in smartphones. It can be used to help smartphone users to hear faint voices, easily understand people talking on a speaker phone and distinguish multiple voices on a single call. The complaint asserts that the AMR-WB code can serves a range of other applications, including media audio content and mobile voice over internet protocols (VoIP), according to a press release issued by Ward, Smith & Hill PLLC, the attorneys for Saint Lawrence Communications.

According to the complaint, AMR-WB serves as a wide band speech coding standard which is as a recognized international standard, that has been adopted as a standard speech codec by the ITU Telecommunication Standardization Sector. It has been leveraged by a number of recognized companies such as, T-Mobile, Sprint, Verizon Wireless and AT&T, who have all launched and supported high definition voice technology through the AMR-WB codec.

In its complaint, Saint Lawrence Communications asserted that Motorola had infringed directly and continues to infringe directly on the company's 6,795,805 patent, titled Periodicity Enhancement in Decoding Wideband Signals; United States Patent No. 6,807,524, titled Perceptual Weighting Device and Method for Efficient Coding of Wideband Signal; United States Patent No. 7,151,802, titled High Frequency Content Recovering Method and Device for Over-Sampled Synthesized Wideband Signal; and United States Patent No. 7,260,521, titled Method and Device for Adaptive Bandwidth Pitch Search in Coding Wideband Signals; United States Patent No. 7,191,123, titled Gain-Smoothing in Wideband Speech and Audio Signal Decoder. 

The infringing acts included, but are not limited to, the manufacture, use, sale, importation, and/or offer for sale of products practicing the AMR-WB Standard. 

Saint Lawrence Communication asserted the technology was used in Motorola's Motorola Droid RAZR, Motorola RAZRi, Motorola Moto G, Motorola Moto E, Motorola Droid MAXX, Motorola Droid Ultra, Motorola Droid Mini, Motorola Droid Turbo, and Motorola X mobile devices.

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