Another major patent lawsuit has hit the video surveillance industry - now targeting manufacturers across the world including Avigilon, Hikvision, Vivotek, UTC/Interlogix and Nuvico, all sued by a Puerto Rican based company, Canatelo, that has a free Wordpress blog as their website.
Five lawsuits were filed in US District Court - all with the same basic complaints (see the complaint package in the UTC/Interlogix and Hikvision cases). [Update: D-Link was also sued as well as Officemax who evidently was sued for reselling D-Link.]
Canatelo owns twopatents for video motion detection. Here is a description of their most fundamental claim / 'invention':
Video inputs are each configured to receive an electronic video signal from a video camera. The processor operates on a digital representation of the electronic video signals from the video inputs. When the computer detects motion in the electronic video signals it generates a compressed representation of the video signal that includes the motion. The compressed representation is transmitted through the network connection.
Essentially, if a surveillance product detects motion and then compresses video, it violates Canatelo's patent. This is fairly amazing since every product does this and has since the 1990s.
The ObjectVideo Patent Lawsuits
If this tactic sounds vaguely familiar, it is because a similar lawsuit campaign has been terrorizing the surveillance industry for the past year. ObjectVideo, the world wide leader in video analytic lawsuits, last year sued Bosch, Samsung and Sony and just last month sued Pelco.
What Do You Think?
Taking A Stand
This is madness. Patents covering such laughably simple and basic concepts make a mockery of the system. The industry needs to take a stand against these suits. And it starts with the manufacturers who have overwhelmingly remained quiet while vultures prey on them.
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