September 30, 2013
At Static Control, we consider the business success and reputation of our customers to be paramount. That is why we have an in-house legal team of intellectual property (IP) experts who review our innovations and work hand-in-hand with our engineers from initial development, to ensure our imaging systems are the most IP-safe solutions in the market.
We are constantly reviewing and strengthening our IP position to protect our customers from potential OEM legal action. Earlier this year, we proactively changed the messaging on some of our replacement HP chips, to more accurately represent the cartridge installed as a non-HP product on the display status screen and supply status page of select printers. This is an example of how our foresight into IP provides our customers with the safest aftermarket solutions available. We implemented this change months prior to HP announcing that the focus of their intellectual property rights will be on smart chips used in printer cartridges.
Much has been said and written about the recently granted General Exclusion Order (GEO) by the US International Trade Commission (USITC) regarding two patents held by Canon regarding gears on their OPC drums. When Canon first initiated legal action in January 2012, many aftermarket suppliers reacted with denial and downplayed the legal implications. Almost two years later, no one is denying the legal ramifications of the ITC’s decision.
Throughout the development of our ZeroTwist Gear solution, we looked at ALL the relevant patents Canon holds on the gear design, not just the two mentioned in legal proceedings. There are more than 10 US and European patents on Canon’s gear design. For example, Canon’s U.S. patent 7,403,733 states that any gear featuring a single projection with more than one contact is in violation. This means that any gear that has one projection with multiple contact points is infringing one of Canon’s patents, even those designed without a twist. Our ZeroTwist gear design has three individual projections with one point of contact, clearly not in violation of this particular patent. For more information regarding the additional patents on the Canon gears, click here.
These are just two high-profile cases of the importance of IP-safe solutions. There are thousands of patents on toner cartridges that we take into consideration during the research, design and manufacturing of our imaging solutions. We conduct due diligence on all of our innovations to ensure we provide our customers with the safest aftermarket products available.
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