USPTO throws out another NTP patent in RIM case

The US Patent and Trademark Office ruled against another NTP patent at the center of its lawsuit against RIM. This is the second time this patent in particular has been rejected, and the USPTO made it clear that the final ruling will most likely uphold the previous two decisions. The patent is not critical for the NTP case, but it does point to an unmistakable pattern. In order for RIM to secure a victory, there is still one NTP patent left to be overturned. However, time is running short for RIM, as a judge denied the company's request to stay the court case until the USPTO had finished ruling on all the patents. If the patent office takes much longer to finish ruling on the remaining patent, RIM could end up facing an injunction and a hefty settlement fee. As some have pointed out: Can RIM sue the USPTO for hundreds of millions when its final patent ruling drops two days too late?

For more on the RIM, NTP saga:
- see this blog entry from Techdirt