A US judge has dismissed a patent infringement lawsuit filed against Apple, Facebook, Google, Yahoo! and other firms by Interval Licensing LLC, a company owned by Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen.
A U.S. District Court of the Western District of Washington ruled that the suit failed to specify devices or products violating patents at issue in the case.
Interval Licensing had filed a complaint last August against major internet search and e-commerce companies alleging that they had infringed on four patents held by Interval. The eleven defendants were AOL, Apple, eBay, Facebook, Google, Netflix, Office Depot, OfficeMax, Staples, Yahoo, and YouTube.
Patents at issue involved using Web browsers to find information; alerting computer users to items of interest, and an "Attention Manager for occupying the peripheral attention of a person in the vicinity of a display device."
Interval Licensing holds patents of Interval Research, the former company founded by Allen and David Liddle in 1992 to perform research and development in the areas of information systems, communications, and computer science. The patents in the lawsuit covered fundamental web technologies first developed at Interval Research in the 1990s.