Kodak shares fall after patent ruling

Kodak camera
Kodak, which is concentrating on printers, has seen a drop in share price

Shares in Kodak have fallen after a ruling by the International Trade Commission that one of its digital imaging patents is "invalid".

It comes after Kodak filed a claim against Apple and RIM, which makes Blackberry devices, relating to the way images are previewed when shooting in Live View.

The original patent was filed in 1997, but the ITC has said while Apple and RIM did indeed breach that patent, the innovation is too "obvious" to be considered a valid patent in the first place.

Kodak, which filed for bankruptcy protection back in January, is in bullish mood still, stating: "We are pleased the ALJ [Administrative Law Judge, for the ITC] has concluded that Kodak's patent is infringed by Apple and RIM.

"We expect to appeal to the full Commission his recommendation on validity. The ALJ's recommendation represents a preliminary step in a process that we are confident will conclude in Kodak's favor"


The once giant imaging manufacturer has a huge inventory of digital imaging patents, as it was Kodak which invented the first digital camera sensor. In recent years, as times have been harder on the US based corporation, it has taken to licensing or selling off those patents to generate income.

This particular patent has already been licensed to Samsung. Shares in Kodak took a tumble after news of the judgement, as it could also have an affect on several of Kodak's other patents.

It seems hardly a week goes by when Kodak isn't suing, or being sued, by someone. Recent examples include Apple suing the firm over printing technology, while Kodak was thought to be teaming up with HTC to take on the mighty Apple.

Kodak announced earlier in the year that it was to stop making digital cameras and concentrate on its printing business. The latest troubles will surely leave some wondering whether the firm can carry on at all.

via BBC News

Amy Davies

Amy has been writing about cameras, photography and associated tech since 2009. Amy was once part of the photography testing team for Future Publishing working across TechRadar, Digital Camera, PhotoPlus, N Photo and Photography Week. For her photography, she has won awards and has been exhibited. She often partakes in unusual projects - including one intense year where she used a different camera every single day. Amy is currently the Features Editor at Amateur Photographer magazine, and in her increasingly little spare time works across a number of high-profile publications including Wired, Stuff, Digital Camera World, Expert Reviews, and just a little off-tangent, PetsRadar.