Microsoft Sued For VR Patent Infringement

On Wednesday in the Middle District of Florida, D3D Technologies, Inc. filed a complaint against Microsoft for patent infringement claiming, that the defendant‘s product infringed its three-dimensional image viewing and manipulation patents, relating to holograms.

The patents-in-suit are United States Patent No. 8,384,771 (the ‘771 patent); 9,349,183 (the ’183 patent); 9,473,766 (the ’766 patent); and 9,980,691 (the ’691 patent), which are “directed to improvements in three-dimensional imaging technology.” According to the article, D3D communicated its desire to work with Microsoft, but received no response. Microsoft’s allegedly infringing products are its HoloLens product line, Integrated Visual Augmentation System (IVAS), and other virtual reality (VR) or augmented reality (AR) products.

Microsoft allegedly infringed the ’771 patent, which relates to “three-dimensional viewing and manipulation of images” through its HoloLens 1, HoloLens 2, and IVAS. The complaint stated that according to Microsoft, the HoloLens 1 “‘redefines personal computing through holographic experiences’ blending ‘cutting-edge optics and sensors to deliver 3D holograms pinned to the real world.’” HoloLens 2 refines the HoloLens 1 experience and IVAS “is based on an enhanced HoloLens 2 design, which, by way of example, adds a night vision capability.” Specifically, Microsoft purportedly infringed at least claims 1-21 of the ’771 patent because, according to the complaint, it used “the claimed methods, computer readable mediums, and computer systems.

As stated in the claim chart, exemplary claim 15 states, “(a) computer system comprising: a memory; a processor; a communications interface; an interconnection mechanism coupling the memory, the processor and the communications interface; and wherein the memory is encoded with an application providing three-dimensional viewing of images by a user, that when performed on the processor, provides a process for processing information, the process causing the computer system to perform the operations of: selecting a volume of interest from a collection of image slices…” Furthermore, in the claim chart, the plaintiff proffered that Microsoft’s accused products comprise a computer system with the aforementioned components, including memory, a processor, and the other necessary components as stated in various Microsoft documents, including articles and its own patents. Additionally, the pre-installed software on the devices provides three-dimensional images. The plaintiff adds that Microsoft’s devices have an interconnection mechanism to “send a set of images to the head-mounted display generated by interactions of the memory, processor, and a communication interface” in order to display a three-dimensional hologram image in front of the user.

The allegations for the remaining patents-in-suit are similar and also relate to three-dimensional image viewing and manipulation and Microsoft’s accused products remain the same. Microsoft is accused of direct, induced, and contributory infringement. D3D has sought declaratory judgment in its favor, a permanent injunction, an award for damages, and other relief. The plaintiff is represented by King, Blackwell, Zehnder & Wermuth, P.A. and Dunlap Bennett & Ludwig.