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Fundamental Innovation Systems International LLC v. LG Electronics, Inc.

United States District Court, E.D. Texas, Marshall Division

April 2, 2018

FUNDAMENTAL INNOVATION SYSTEMS INTERNATIONAL LLC,
v.
LG ELECTRONICS INC., et al. Plaintiff's Proposed Construction Defendants' Proposed Construction Plaintiff's Proposed Construction Defendants' Proposed Construction Plaintiff's Proposed Construction Defendants' Proposed Construction Plaintiff's Proposed Construction Defendants' Proposed Construction Plaintiff's Proposed Construction Defendants' Proposed Construction Plaintiff's Proposed Construction Defendants' Proposed Construction Plaintiff's Proposed Construction Defendants' Proposed Construction Plaintiff's Proposed Construction Defendants' Proposed Construction Plaintiff's Proposed Construction Defendants' Proposed Construction Term Construction Term Construction Plaintiff's Proposed Construction Defendants' Proposed Construction Plaintiff's Proposed Construction Defendants' Proposed Construction Plaintiff's Proposed Construction Defendants' Proposed Construction Plaintiff's Proposed Construction Defendants' Proposed Construction Plaintiff's Proposed Construction Defendants' Proposed Construction Plaintiff's Proposed Construction Defendants' Proposed Construction Plaintiff's Proposed Construction Defendants' Proposed Construction Plaintiff's Proposed Construction Defendants' Proposed Construction Plaintiff's Proposed Construction Defendants' Proposed Construction Plaintiff's Proposed Construction Defendants' Proposed Construction Plaintiff's Proposed Construction Defendants' Proposed Construction Plaintiff's Proposed Construction Defendants' Proposed Construction Plaintiff's Proposed Construction Defendants' Proposed Construction Plaintiff's Proposed Construction Defendants' Proposed Construction Plaintiff's Proposed Construction Defendants' Proposed Construction

          CLAIM CONSTRUCTION MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER

          ROY S. PAVNE UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE.

         On March 26, 2018, the Court held a hearing to determine the proper construction of disputed claim terms in United States Patents No. 7, 239, 111, 7, 791, 319, 7, 834, 586, 7, 893, 655, 7, 999, 514, 8, 232, 766, and 8, 624, 550. Having reviewed the arguments made by the parties at the hearing and in their claim construction briefing (Dkt. Nos. 123, 127 & 130), [1] having considered the intrinsic evidence, and having made subsidiary factual findings about the extrinsic evidence, the Court hereby issues this Claim Construction Memorandum and Order. See Phillips v. AWH Corp., 415 F.3d 1303, 1314 (Fed. Cir. 2005); see also Teva Pharm. USA, Inc. v. Sandoz, Inc., 135 S.Ct. 831, 841 (2015).

         Table of Contents

         I. BACKGROUND ....................................................................................................................... 4

         II. LEGAL PRINCIPLES ........................................................................................................... 6

         III. THE PARTIES' STIPULATED TERMS ........................................................................... 9

         IV. CONSTRUCTION OF DISPUTED TERMS IN THE FISCHER PATENTS .............. 10

         A. “USB” ................................................................................................................................. 11

         B. “USB adapter” and “Universal Serial Bus (‘USB') adapter” ............................................. 12

         C. “USB controller” ................................................................................................................. 15

         D. “USB connector” ................................................................................................................ 17

         E. “USB communication path” ................................................................................................ 20

         F. “abnormal USB data condition” and “abnormal USB data line condition” ........................ 22

         G. “USB specification” ............................................................................................................ 27

         H. “without USB enumeration” ............................................................................................... 29

         I. “identification signal” ........................................................................................................... 33

         J. “a mobile device” ................................................................................................................. 35

         K. “microprocessor” ................................................................................................................ 36

         L. “generate” and “generating” ................................................................................................ 37

         M. “adapter” ............................................................................................................................. 40

         N. “means for receiving energy from a power socket” ............................................................ 44

         O. “means for regulating the received energy from the power socket to generate a power output” ..................................... 45

         P. “means for generating an identification signal that indicates to the mobile device that the power socket is not a USB hub or host” ............... 46

         Q. “means for coupling the power output and identification signal to the mobile device” ..... 48

         V. CONSTRUCTION OF DISPUTED TERMS IN THE '319 PATENT FAMILY ........... 50

         R. “USB” ................................................................................................................................. 50

         S. “battery charge controller” .................................................................................................. 51

         T. “voltage drop across [a/the] battery charge controller” ....................................................... 56

         U. “power” ............................................................................................................................... 59

         V. “such that . . . the rechargeable battery receives a remainder of [the] power available from the battery charge controller” and “such that . . . the rechargeable battery receives a remainder of the received power” .................................................................................... 61

         W. “reference voltage” and “reference voltage signal” ........................................................... 64

         X. “a switch” and “a semiconductor switch” ........................................................................... 65

         Y. “voltage sensing circuit” ..................................................................................................... 66

         Z. “wherein the supply current passes through the external driving semiconductor rather than through the battery charge controller” and “whereby load current passes through the external driving semiconductor instead of the battery charge controller” .................... 70

         AA. Preambles ......................................................................................................................... 71

         BB. “means for receiving power from the USB port” ............................................................. 73

         CC. “means for supplying the received power to the rechargeable battery and to the portable device, wherein the supplied power is limited such that the rechargeable battery and the portable device may not draw more than a pre-determined maximum amount of current available from the USB port” ..... 74

         DD. “means for both isolating the rechargeable battery from the portable device and controlling an amount of current supplied to the rechargeable battery such that the portable device receives a pre-determined amount of the received power needed to operate and the rechargeable battery receives a remainder of the received power” ........... 76

         EE. “means for measuring a voltage drop across a battery charge controller providing power to a portable device and an input of a switch in parallel” ........................................ 79

         FF. “means for responding to the voltage drop across the battery charge controller by modulating the switch to control a quantity of current supplied to a rechargeable battery such that the portable device receives a predetermined amount of power to operate and the rechargeable battery receives a remainder of power available from the battery charge controller” ................................................................... 81

         VI. CONSTRUCTION OF DISPUTED TERMS IN THE '655 PATENT ........................... 83

         GG. “USB” .............................................................................................................................. 83

         HH. “USB-compliant charging and power supply circuit” ..................................................... 84

         II. “power” ............................................................................................................................... 85

         JJ. “reference voltage” ............................................................................................................. 87

         KK. “a switch” and “a semiconductor switch” ........................................................................ 90

         LL. “adjust” ............................................................................................................................. 91

         VII. CONCLUSION .................................................................................................................. 93

         I. BACKGROUND

         Plaintiff Fundamental Innovation Systems International LLC (“Plaintiff” or “Fundamental” or “FISI”) has alleged infringement of United States Patents No. 7, 239, 111 (“the '111 Patent”), 7, 791, 319 (“the '319 Patent”), 7, 834, 586 (“the '586 Patent”), 7, 893, 655 (“the '655 Patent”), 7, 999, 514 (“the '514 Patent”), 8, 232, 766 (“the '766 Patent”), and 8, 624, 550 (“the '550 Patent”) (collectively, the “patents-in-suit”) by Defendants LG Electronics, Inc., LG Electronics U.S.A., Inc., LG Electronics Mobilecomm U.S.A. Inc., LG Electronics Mobile Research U.S.A. LLC, LG Electronics Alabama, Inc., Huawei Investment & Holding Co., Ltd., Huawei Technologies Co., Ltd., Huawei Device USA, Inc., and Futurewei Technologies, Inc. (collectively, “Defendants”). Plaintiff submits that the patents-in-suit relate to “battery charging and power management.” Dkt. No. 123 at 1.

         The '111 Patent, titled “Universal Serial Bus Adapter for a Mobile Device, ” issued on July 3, 2007, and bears an earliest priority date of March 1, 2001. The '586 Patent, '766 Patent, and '550 Patent are continuations of the '111 Patent, and these patents share the same specification. See Dkt. No. 103 at 1 n.1. The Abstract of the '111 Patent states:

An adapter for providing a source of power to a mobile device through an industry standard port is provided. In accordance with one aspect of the invention, the adapter comprises a plug unit, a power converter, a primary connector, and an identification subsystem. The plug unit is operative to couple the adapter to a power socket and operative to receive energy from the power socket. The power converter is electrically coupled to the plug unit and is operable to regulate the received energy from the power socket and to output a power requirement to the mobile device. The primary connector is electrically coupled to the power converter and is operative to couple to the mobile device and to deliver the outputted power requirement to the mobile device. The identification subsystem is electrically coupled to the primary connector and is operative to provide an identification signal.

         The '319 Patent, titled “Circuit and Method of Operation for an Electrical Power Supply, ” issued on September 7, 2010, and bears a filing date of February 21, 2003. The '514 Patent is a continuation of the '319 Patent, and these patents share the same specification. See Dkt. No. 103 at 1 n.2. The Abstract of the '319 Patent states:

A battery charging circuit comprising: a semiconductor switch having an output connected to a rechargeable battery; a battery charge controller for receiving power from an external source, and supplying output power to a portable device and the input of the semiconductor switch, the current output of the battery charge controller being controllable; and a voltage sensing circuit for: measuring the voltage drop across the battery charge controller; and responding to the voltage drop across the battery charge controller by modulating the semiconductor switch to reduce the quantity of current supplied to the rechargeable battery when the voltage drop is too great; whereby the total power dissipated by the battery charge controller is controlled, the portable device receiving the power it needs to operate and the rechargeable battery receiving any additional available power.

         The '655 Patent, titled “Charging and Power Supply for Mobile Devices, ” issued on February 22, 2011, and bears an earliest priority date of December 13, 2005. The Abstract of the '655 Patent states:

Charging and power supply for mobile devices is disclosed. A USB-compliant charging and power supply circuit includes switch-mode battery charging circuitry for receiving power from an external power source and for supplying output power through an output node to an electronic system of an electronic communication device and a battery. Battery isolation circuitry includes a semiconductor switch connecting the output node to the battery. The battery isolation circuitry senses voltage at the output node and variably restricts current to the battery when the voltage is below a minimum voltage value by operationally controlling the semiconductor switch as current passes through it. During variable current restriction the electronic system is supplied required power with said battery being supplied any additional available power.

         Plaintiff has referred to these three groupings of the patents-in-suit as “the Fischer Patents, ” “the '319 Patent Family, ” and “the '655 Patent, ” respectively. The '319 Patent Family and the '655 Patent, together, have sometimes been referred to as “the Veselic Patents.”

         The Court has previously construed terms in the patents-in-suit in Fundamental Innovation Systems International LLC v. Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd., et al., No. 2:17-CV-145, Dkt. No. 140 (E.D. Tex. Jan. 31, 2018) (“Samsung”).

         Shortly before the start of the March 26, 2018 hearing, the Court provided the parties with preliminary constructions with the aim of focusing the parties' arguments and facilitating discussion. Those preliminary constructions are noted below within the discussion for each term.

         II. LEGAL PRINCIPLES

         “It is a ‘bedrock principle' of patent law that ‘the claims of a patent define the invention to which the patentee is entitled the right to exclude.'” Phillips, 415 F.3d at 1312 (quoting Innova/Pure Water Inc. v. Safari Water Filtration Sys., Inc., 381 F.3d 1111, 1115 (Fed. Cir. 2004)). Claim construction is clearly an issue of law for the court to decide. Markman v. Westview Instruments, Inc., 52 F.3d 967, 970-71 (Fed. Cir. 1995) (en banc), aff'd, 517 U.S. 370 (1996). “In some cases, however, the district court will need to look beyond the patent's intrinsic evidence and to consult extrinsic evidence in order to understand, for example, the background science or the meaning of a term in the relevant art during the relevant time period.” Teva, 135 S.Ct. at 841 (citation omitted). “In cases where those subsidiary facts are in dispute, courts will need to make subsidiary factual findings about that extrinsic evidence. These are the ‘evidentiary underpinnings' of claim construction that we discussed in Markman, and this subsidiary factfinding must be reviewed for clear error on appeal.” Id. (citing 517 U.S. 370).

         To determine the meaning of the claims, courts start by considering the intrinsic evidence. See Phillips, 415 F.3d at 1313; see also C.R. Bard, Inc. v. U.S. Surgical Corp., 388 F.3d 858, 861 (Fed. Cir. 2004); Bell Atl. Network Servs., Inc. v. Covad Commc'ns Group, Inc., 262 F.3d 1258, 1267 (Fed. Cir. 2001). The intrinsic evidence includes the claims themselves, the specification, and the prosecution history. See Phillips, 415 F.3d at 1314; C.R. Bard, 388 F.3d at 861. Courts give claim terms their ordinary and accustomed meaning as understood by one of ordinary skill in the art at the time of the invention in the context of the entire patent. Phillips, 415 F.3d at 1312-13; accord Alloc, Inc. v. Int'l Trade Comm'n, 342 F.3d 1361, 1368 (Fed. Cir. 2003).

         The claims themselves provide substantial guidance in determining the meaning of particular claim terms. Phillips, 415 F.3d at 1314. First, a term's context in the asserted claim can be very instructive. Id. Other asserted or unasserted claims can aid in determining the claim's meaning because claim terms are typically used consistently throughout the patent. Id. Differences among the claim terms can also assist in understanding a term's meaning. Id. For example, when a dependent claim adds a limitation to an independent claim, it is presumed that the independent claim does not include the limitation. Id. at 1314-15.

         “[C]laims ‘must be read in view of the specification, of which they are a part.'” Id. at 1315 (quoting Markman, 52 F.3d at 979 (en banc)). “[T]he specification ‘is always highly relevant to the claim construction analysis. Usually, it is dispositive; it is the single best guide to the meaning of a disputed term.'” Phillips, 415 F.3d at 1315 (quoting Vitronics Corp. v. Conceptronic, Inc., 90 F.3d 1576, 1582 (Fed. Cir. 1996)); accord Teleflex, Inc. v. Ficosa N. Am. Corp., 299 F.3d 1313, 1325 (Fed. Cir. 2002). This is true because a patentee may define his own terms, give a claim term a different meaning than the term would otherwise possess, or disclaim or disavow the claim scope. Phillips, 415 F.3d at 1316. In these situations, the inventor's lexicography governs. Id. The specification may also resolve the meaning of ambiguous claim terms “where the ordinary and accustomed meaning of the words used in the claims lack sufficient clarity to permit the scope of the claim to be ascertained from the words alone.” Teleflex, 299 F.3d at 1325. But, “[a]lthough the specification may aid the court in interpreting the meaning of disputed claim language, particular embodiments and examples appearing in the specification will not generally be read into the claims.” Comark Commc'ns, Inc. v. Harris Corp., 156 F.3d 1182, 1187 (Fed. Cir. 1998) (quoting Constant v. Advanced Micro-Devices, Inc., 848 F.2d 1560, 1571 (Fed. Cir. 1988)); accord Phillips, 415 F.3d at 1323.

         The prosecution history is another tool to supply the proper context for claim construction because a patent applicant may also define a term in prosecuting the patent. Home Diagnostics, Inc., v. Lifescan, Inc., 381 F.3d 1352, 1356 (Fed. Cir. 2004) (“As in the case of the specification, a patent applicant may define a term in prosecuting a patent.”). “[T]he prosecution history (or file wrapper) limits the interpretation of claims so as to exclude any interpretation that may have been disclaimed or disavowed during prosecution in order to obtain claim allowance.” Standard Oil Co. v. Am. Cyanamid Co., 774 F.2d 448, 452 (Fed. Cir. 1985).

         Although extrinsic evidence can be useful, it is “less significant than the intrinsic record in determining the legally operative meaning of claim language.” Phillips, 415 F.3d at 1317 (citations and internal quotation marks omitted). Technical dictionaries and treatises may help a court understand the underlying technology and the manner in which one skilled in the art might use claim terms, but technical dictionaries and treatises may provide definitions that are too broad or may not be indicative of how the term is used in the patent. Id. at 1318. Similarly, expert testimony may aid a court in understanding the underlying technology and determining the particular meaning of a term in the pertinent field, but an expert's conclusory, unsupported assertions as to a term's definition are entirely unhelpful to a court. Id. Generally, extrinsic evidence is “less reliable than the patent and its prosecution history in determining how to read claim terms.” Id.

         The Supreme Court of the United States has “read [35 U.S.C.] § 112, ¶ 2 to require that a patent's claims, viewed in light of the specification and prosecution history, inform those skilled in the art about the scope of the invention with reasonable certainty.” Nautilus, Inc. v. Biosig Instruments, Inc., 134 S.Ct. 2120, 2129 (2014). “A determination of claim indefiniteness is a legal conclusion that is drawn from the court's performance of its duty as the construer of patent claims.” Datamize, LLC v. Plumtree Software, Inc., 417 F.3d 1342, 1347 (Fed. Cir. 2005) (citations and internal quotation marks omitted), abrogated on other grounds by Nautilus, 134 S.Ct. 2120.

         In general, prior claim construction proceedings involving the same patents-in-suit are “entitled to reasoned deference under the broad principals of stare decisis and the goals articulated by the Supreme Court in Markman, even though stare decisis may not be applicable per se.” Maurice Mitchell Innovations, LP v. Intel Corp., No. 2:04-CV-450, 2006 WL 1751779, at *4 (E.D. Tex. June 21, 2006) (Davis, J.); see TQP Development, LLC v. Intuit Inc., No. 2:12-CV-180, 2014 WL 2810016, at *6 (E.D. Tex. June 20, 2014) (Bryson, J., sitting by designation) (“[P]revious claim constructions in cases involving the same patent are entitled to substantial weight, and the Court has determined that it will not depart from those constructions absent a strong reason for doing so.”); see also Teva, 135 S.Ct. at 839-40 (“prior cases will sometimes be binding because of issue preclusion and sometimes will serve as persuasive authority”) (citation omitted); Finisar Corp. v. DirecTV Grp., Inc., 523 F.3d 1323, 1329 (Fed. Cir. 2008) (noting “the importance of uniformity in the treatment of a given patent”) (quoting Markman v. Westview Instruments, Inc., 517 U.S. 370, 390 (1996)).

         III. THE PARTIES' STIPULATED TERMS

         In their December 29, 2017 Joint 4-3 Claim Construction and Prehearing Statement, the parties submitted that “[t]he parties have met and conferred regarding their proposed terms and constructions, but have not agreed on constructions or partial constructions at this time.” Dkt. No. 103 at 2. In their March 9, 2018 Joint Claim Construction Chart Pursuant to P.R. 4-5(d), the parties agreed that “USB enumeration” has its “[p]lain meaning in light of the Court's construction of ‘USB.'” Dkt. No. 135, Ex. A1 at 2. Additional agreements are set forth in the discussion of particular terms herein.

         IV. CONSTRUCTION OF DISPUTED TERMS IN THE FISCHER PATENTS[2]

         Defendants have presented “USB” as a distinct term. See Dkt. No. 127 at 1-5. Plaintiff's opening brief addresses terms that include “USB, ” but Plaintiff has not separately addressed “USB” as a distinct term. See Dkt. No. 123. Because Plaintiff has grouped its arguments as to “USB” terms (see Id. at 3-13), because Samsung construed “USB” as a distinct term (see Samsung at 11-20 & 22), and because the parties here have agreed to the Samsung construction for “USB” as noted below, the Court begins by addressing the term “USB.”[3]

         A. “USB”

Plaintiff's Proposed Construction

Defendants' Proposed Construction

“USB should only be construed as part of the term in which it appears; a Universal Serial Bus is a type of serial bus. A serial bus is a communication channel across which data, if transmitted, is transmitted one bit at a time.”

“USB is an abbreviation for ‘Universal Serial Bus, ' which is a computer standard technology described in Universal Serial Bus Specification Revision 2.0 and other versions of this standard promulgated at the time of the claimed invention.”

Dkt. No. 103, Ex. A1 at 82; id., Ex. B1 at 1. The parties submit that this term appears in Claims 1-3, 6-8, 12, and 14-18 of the '111 Patent, Claims 8, 9, 11, and 12 of the '586 Patent, Claims 1-7, 9-15, 17-20, and 24 of the '766 Patent, and Claims 1, 3-5, 10, and 12-14 of the '550 Patent. Dkt. No. 103, Ex. B1 at 1; see id., Ex. A1 at 82 (“passim”); Dkt. No. 135, Ex. A1 at 1.

         In Samsung, the Court construed this term to mean “Universal Serial Bus as described in Universal Serial Bus Specification Revision 2.0 and related versions of this standard at the time of the claimed invention.” Samsung at 22.

         In the parties' March 9, 2018 Joint Claim Construction Chart, the parties submit that they have agreed to the Samsung construction. Dkt. No. 135, Ex. A1 at 1. Shortly before the start of the March 26, 2018 hearing, the Court provided the parties with a preliminary construction identical to the Samsung construction. At the hearing, no party objected to this construction.

         The Court therefore hereby construes “USB” to mean “Universal Serial Bus as described in Universal Serial Bus Specification Revision 2.0 and related versions of this standard at the time of the claimed invention.”

         B. “USB adapter” and “Universal Serial Bus (‘USB') adapter”

Plaintiff's Proposed Construction

Defendants' Proposed Construction

Not limiting; alternatively, “power supply configured to supply power from a power source to a USB device”[4]

Limiting as part of preamble.

No construction necessary outside of “USB”

Alternatively:

“adapter specified in USB[] specification”

Dkt. No. 103, Ex. B1 at 15 & 17; Dkt. No. 123 at 4; Dkt. No. 127 at 9; Dkt. No. 135, Ex. A1 at 3. The parties submit that this term appears in Claims 1, 17, and 18 of the '111 Patent and dependent claims. Dkt. No. 135, Ex. A1 at 3; see Dkt. No. 103, Ex. A1 at 27 & 36; id., Ex. B1 at 17 (“'111: 1, 2, 3, 6, 7, 8, 12, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18”); Dkt. No. 127 at 9 (“'111: all claims”).

         In Samsung, the Court found that “Universal Serial Bus (‘USB') adapter, ” which appears only in the preambles of Claims 1 and 18 of the '111 Patent, was not limiting. See Samsung at 23-26. As to the term “USB adapter” in Claim 17 of the '111 Patent, Samsung construed this term to mean “power supply configured to supply power from a power source to a USB device.” Samsung at 26.

         Shortly before the start of the March 26, 2018 hearing, the Court provided the parties with the following preliminary constructions: “Universal Serial Bus (‘USB') adapter” ('111 Pat., Cls. 1, 18): “Not limiting”; “USB adapter” ('111 Pat., Cl. 17): “power supply configured to supply power from a power source to a USB device.”

         (1) The Parties' Positions

         Plaintiff argues that this term is not limiting where it appears in only the preamble of a claim. Dkt. No. 123 at 4. Alternatively, Plaintiff proposes the Samsung construction. Id. at 5.

         Defendants respond that this term is limiting because it recites essential structure and is described in the specification as being the invention. Dkt. No. 127 at 9. As to the meaning of the term, Defendants argue that “the departures from the USB standard are reflected in other claim limitations, and the patentee never acted as a lexicographer to redefine the term ‘USB adapter' itself.” Id. at 10.

         Plaintiff replies that “Defendants do not identify any ‘essential structure' signified by the term that is not set forth in the body of the claims.” Dkt. No. 130 at 2. Alternatively, Plaintiff proposes the Samsung construction. Id.

         At the March 26, 2018 hearing, the parties presented oral arguments as to this term.

         (2) Analysis

         As to Claims 1 and 18 of the '111 Patent, the term “Universal Serial Bus (‘USB') adapter” appears only in the preambles, and Samsung found that this term is merely descriptive of the limitations expressly recited in the body of each claim. Samsung at 25. Defendants' argument that “[w]ithout these components being part of a USB adapter, they would essentially be a meaningless group of circuits scattered on a table” (Dkt. No. 127 at 10) is unpersuasive.

         Claim 1 of the '550 Patent recites an “adapter” rather than a “USB adapter, ” and Defendants cite this distinction as demonstrating that “[w]hen the patentee did not want to use a standard ‘USB adapter' as described in USB 2.0, it claimed an ‘adapter' with only certain USB features” (id.), but Defendants have not shown how this use of a different term in a claim of a different (albeit related) patent is necessarily relevant. In sum, Defendants have not justified departing from the Samsung analysis.

         As to Claim 17 of the '111 Patent, the term “USB adapter” appears only in the preamble but is recited in relation to, for example, a “USB connector” that provides antecedent basis for limitations set forth in the body of the claim, as discussed in Samsung. See Samsung at 24-25. This term in Claim 17 of the '111 Patent is therefore limiting.

         As to the proper construction of this term in this claim, Samsung found that construing “USB adapter” to mean an “adapter specified in USB” (as Defendants have essentially proposed in the present case as well) would be inconsistent with the context in which the term “USB adapter” is used in the claim and in the specification. See Id. at 25-26. For example, the specification discloses that power can be drawn from the USB adapter “without regard to the USB specification”:

The USB adapter 100 contributes to a system wherein a device 10 that follows the USB specification when coupled to a typical USB host via its USB port can be informed that the USB adapter 100 has been coupled to the device 10 and that the device 10 can now draw power without regard to the USB specification and the USB specification imposed limits.

'111 Patent at 8:17-22 (emphasis added); see Id. at 8:23-42; see also Dkt. No. 127, Ex. 11-1, Universal Serial Bus Specification Revision 2.0 at § 7.2.1.2.1 (“Over-current Protection”).[5]

         Defendants have not justified departing from the Samsung construction; the recited adapter is a “USB” adapter not in terms of any definition set forth in a USB specification but rather because, for example, power is provided through a USB connector. See '111 Patent at Cl. 17.

         The Court therefore hereby construes these disputed terms as set forth in the following chart:

Term

Construction

“Universal Serial Bus (‘USB') adapter” ('111 Patent, Claims 1, 18)

Not limiting

“USB adapter” ('111 Patent, Claim 17)

“power supply configured to supply power from a power source to a USB device”

         C. “USB controller”

Plaintiff's Proposed Construction

Defendants' Proposed Construction

“a controller operable to communicate an identification signal”[6]

Defendants adopt the Court's construction from the Samsung litigation. 2:17-cv-00145 (D.I. 140). No construction necessary outside of “USB”[7]

Dkt. No. 123 at 6; Dkt. No. 135, Ex. A1 at 1. Defendants submit that this term appears in Claim 8 of the '111 Patent. Dkt. No. 103, Ex. B1 at 18; Dkt. No. 135, Ex. A1 at 1.

         In Samsung, the Court construed this term to have its plain meaning apart from the Court's construction of “USB.” Samsung at 31.

         Shortly before the start of the March 26, 2018 hearing, the Court provided the parties with the following preliminary construction: “Plain meaning apart from the Court's construction of ‘USB.'”

         (1) The Parties' Positions

         Plaintiff argues that “the USB controller is unique to the Fischer Patents and is not specified in the USB specifications.” Dkt. No. 123 at 6.

         Defendants respond that Plaintiff's proposal is an attempt to “completely read out the term ‘USB.'” Dkt. No. 127 at 9.

         Plaintiff replies by reiterating that “[j]ust as the claimed USB adapters provide functionality that differs from a USB 2.0 hub or host (or other USB device), the USB controller within the claimed adapter is distinct from the hub and host controllers specified in USB 2.0.” Dkt. No. 130 at 3. Plaintiff further submits that “[t]he hub and host controllers in USB 2.0, by contrast, cannot generate an identification signal and cannot enable drawing power without regard to USB 2.0 limits; rather, those controllers manage the same enumeration process that is not required of the claimed USB controller.” Id.

         At the March 26, 2018 hearing, the parties presented oral arguments as to this term. In particular, Plaintiff alternatively proposed that “USB controller” could be construed to mean “a controller operable to communicate an identification signal to a USB device.”

         (2) Analysis

         Samsung addressed substantially the same arguments that Plaintiff has presented here. See, e.g., Dkt. No. 123, Ex. 10, Feb. 7, 2018 Fernald Decl. at ¶ 24 (“Because the claimed USB adapter is not described anywhere in USB 2.0, and is capable of providing power without regard to power limits imposed by the USB specification, a POSITA [(person of ordinary skill in the art)] would have understood that the claimed USB controller also need not comply with the USB specification.”). For example, Plaintiff urged at the March 26, 2018 hearing that the “USB controller” is not like the “hub controller” or “host controller” set forth in the USB 2.0 specification because the “USB controller” need not have the functionality of such a “hub controller” or “host controller.” Plaintiff's argument merely presents its proposed conclusion in the guise of a supporting rationale. In other words, Plaintiff merely restates the premise that is in dispute, namely as to whether the term “USB” limits the nature of the “controller” to being in accordance with the USB 2.0 specification.

         The Court reaches the same conclusion here as in Samsung for the same reasons set forth in Samsung. See Samsung at 31 (“the written description is consistent with understanding the recited ‘USB controller' as a controller that accords with the USB standard but that is utilized in a purportedly inventive manner”). Unlike for the term “USB adapter, ” “controller” is a term that is used in the USB 2.0 specification, and Plaintiff has not demonstrated that the patentee used the term “USB controller” in a manner contrary to the USB 2.0 specification.

         The Court therefore hereby construes “USB controller” to have its plain meaning apart from the Court's construction of “USB.”

         D. “USB connector”

Plaintiff's Proposed Construction

Defendants' Proposed Construction

“a component for electrically coupling to a USB device, hub, host or adapter”[8]

Defendants adopt the Court's construction from the Samsung litigation. 2:17-cv-00145 (D.I. 140). No construction necessary outside of “USB”[9]

Dkt. No. 123 at 7; Dkt. No. 127 at 5; Dkt. No. 135, Ex. A1 at 1. The parties submit that this term appears in Claims 1-17 of the '111 Patent and Claims 9 and 12 of the '586 Patent. Dkt. No. 103, Ex. A1 at 1 & 36; see id., Ex. B1 at 16 (“'111: 1-3, 6-8, 12, 14, 16-17”; “'586: 9 and 12”); see also Dkt. No. 127 at 5 (“'111: 1, 6, 7, 8, 12, 14, 17; '586: 9, 12”).

         In Samsung, the Court construed this term to have its plain meaning in light of the Court's construction of “USB.” Samsung at 22.

         Shortly before the start of the March 26, 2018 hearing, the Court provided the parties with the following preliminary construction: “Plain meaning apart from the Court's construction of ‘USB.'”

         At the March 26, 2018 hearing, the parties presented oral arguments as to this term.

         (1) The Parties' Positions

         Plaintiff argues: “As with USB controller, USB 2.0 does not describe a USB connector for use with a USB adapter. The reason is obvious - there is no USB adapter described in the USB 2.0 specification.” Dkt. No. 123 at 7. Plaintiff also submits that “USB specifications expressly allow a device to have a nonstandard USB connector.” Id. at 9.

         Defendants respond that “[t]he claims use the term ‘USB connector' in its ordinary sense with no special meaning suggested.” Dkt. No. 127 at 5. Defendants urge that Plaintiff's proposals should be rejected because “[t]he word ‘connector' itself, and the context in which it is used in the claims, connotes physical (not just electrical) connectivity.” Id. at 6. Defendants also argue that Plaintiff's reliance upon so-called “captive cable assemblies” and “vendor-specific” connectors is unavailing because “[t]he USB standard nowhere defines ‘USB connector' to encompass these vendor-specific (i.e., non-USB) connectors.” Id. at 8.

         Plaintiff replies that “[a]lthough USB 2.0 specifies connectors for devices, hosts, and hubs, it does not specify a connector for a USB adapter (because it does not specify a USB adapter).” Dkt. No. 130 at 3. Plaintiff urges that no specific form factor is required and that “[a]ny component that can electrically couple the USB adapter to the Vbus, Gnd, D, and D- pins of a USB device (for supplying power and transmitting an identification signal) is sufficient.” Id. at 4.

         (2) Analysis

         Samsung addressed substantially the same arguments that Plaintiff has presented here. See Dkt. No. 123 at 8 (“The intrinsic record, however, references no physical requirements for the USB connector other than the need for Vbus, Gnd, D and D- pins to enable power and identification signals to be carried.”); see also Id. at 9-10 (“compatibility of the USB interface is not about form factor, it is about common communication protocols”).

         The Court accordingly reaches the same conclusions here as in Samsung for the same reasons set forth in Samsung. See Samsung at 20-22 (“the written description uses this term to refer to a physical connector”); see also Id. at 14-20 (discussing case law); '111 Patent at 6:15- 17 (“Coupled to the USB port 18 is a USB connector 54. The USB connector 54 is the physical component that couples the USB port to the outside world.”). For example, Plaintiff has not demonstrated that an interpretation of “USB adapter” that is not defined by USB specifications necessarily imparts a broader meaning to the “USB connector.” As another example, although a cable might at one end have a connector defined in the USB 2.0 standard and at the other end have a “vendor-specific” connector, Plaintiff has not shown that such “vendor-specific” connectors would necessarily then be referred to as “USB” connectors. See Samsung at 21.

         The Court therefore hereby construes “USB connector” to have its plain meaning apart from the Court's construction of “USB.”

         E. “USB communication path”

Plaintiff's Proposed Construction

Defendants' Proposed Construction

Not limiting as part of preamble

“path over which signals across USB data pins can be received or transmitted”

USB communication path is limiting.[10]

Defendants adopt the Court's construction from the Samsung litigation. 2:17-cv-00145 (D.I. 140).

No construction necessary outside of “USB”[11]

Dkt. No. 103, Ex. A1 at 48 & 59-60; id., Ex. B1 at 15; Dkt. No. 123 at 10; Dkt. No. 135, Ex. A1 at 1-2. The parties submit that this term appears in Claims 1, 4, 9, 12, 17, 19, 20, and 24 of the '766 Patent and Claims 1, 4, 5, 10, 13, and 14 of the '550 Patent. Dkt. No. 103, Ex. B1 at 6; see Dkt. No. 135, Ex. A1 at 1-2; see also Dkt. No. 103, Ex. A1 at 48 (“'766 all claims; [']550 all claims”) & 59-60 (“'766, claim 17”).

         In Samsung, the Court construed this term to have its plain meaning apart from the Court's construction of “USB.” Samsung at 31.

         Shortly before the start of the March 26, 2018 hearing, the Court provided the parties with the following preliminary construction: “Plain meaning apart from the Court's construction of ‘USB.'”

         (1) The Parties' Positions

         Plaintiff argues that this term is not limited by the USB specification because “[w]hen on the adapter side, the USB communication path need not participate in enumeration, need not perform any normal USB communication and may transmit only abnormal USB data conditions.” Dkt. No. 123 at 10.

         Defendants respond that Plaintiff's proposal is an attempt to “completely read out the term ‘USB.'” Dkt. No. 127 at 9.

         Plaintiff replies that “the adapter-side USB communication path merely provides a path for transmitting or receiving signals (such as an abnormal USB data condition) across USB data pins. The USB communication path in the adapter need not provide a path for normal USB communications or enumeration, and thus deviates from the communication path specified in USB 2.0.” Dkt. No. 130 at 3.

         At the March 26, 2018 hearing, the parties presented oral arguments as to this term.

         (2) Analysis

         Samsung addressed substantially the same arguments that Plaintiff has presented here. See, e.g., Dkt. No. 123, Ex. 10, Feb. 7, 2018 Fernald Decl. at ¶ 24 (“[T]he specification teaches . . . that a USB adapter may be one incapable of undergoing enumeration, and hence a POSITA would have understood that the claimed USB communication path need not be required to have the full data exchange capacity as specified generally in a USB specification.”).

         The Court reaches the same conclusion here as in Samsung for the same reasons set forth in Samsung. See Samsung at 30-31 (“[A]ny question as to whether an instrumentality accused of being a claimed ‘adapter' has a ‘USB communication path' is a question of fact for the finder of fact to evaluate in light of the relevant USB standards.”); see also Dkt. No. 127, Ex. 5, U.S. Provisional Application No. 60/273, 021 at 7 (FISI00019360) (“The traditional communications mode of operation of a USB peripheral is described in great detail in the current USB standard and is not discussed presently as it is obvious to a person skilled in the art.”). Plaintiff has not demonstrated that an interpretation of “USB adapter” that is not defined by USB specifications necessarily imparts a broader meaning to the “USB communication path.” Unlike for the term “USB adapter, ” Plaintiff has not demonstrated that the patentee used the term “USB communication path” in a manner contrary to the USB 2.0 specification.

         The Court therefore hereby construes “USB communication path” to have its plain meaning apart from the Court's construction of “USB.”

         F. “abnormal USB data condition” and “abnormal USB data line condition”

“abnormal USB data condition [detected at said USB communication path]” ('766 Patent, Cls. 1-23)
“abnormal data condition on said USB communication path” ('550 Patent, Cls. 4, 13, and dependent claims)

Plaintiff's Proposed Construction

Defendants' Proposed Construction

“condition on the USB communication path that is not defined as a valid USB data condition”[12]

“abnormal data condition” and “abnormal USB data condition”: “an invalid or illegal data condition specified in USB” “abnormal data condition on said USB communication path”: “an invalid or illegal data condition on said USB communication path specified in USB”

“abnormal USB data line condition on said D line and said D- line” ('766 Patent, Cls. 5, 13)
“abnormal data line condition on said D line and said D- line” ('550 Patent, Cls. 6, 15)[13]

Plaintiff's Proposed Construction

Defendants' Proposed Construction

“condition on the D line and D- line that is not defined as a valid USB data condition”[14]

“abnormal data line condition” and “abnormal USB data line condition”: “an invalid or illegal data line condition specified in USB” “abnormal data line condition on said D line and said D- line”: “an invalid or illegal data line condition on said D line and D- line specified in USB”

Dkt. No. 102, Ex. A1 at 71 & 74; id., Ex. B1 at 8-9; Dkt. No. 123 at 10; Dkt. No. 135, Ex. A1 at 4.

         In Samsung, the Court construed “abnormal USB data condition [detected at said USB communication path]” and “abnormal data condition on said USB communication path” to mean “condition on the USB communication path that is not defined as a valid USB data condition” (in light of the Court's construction of “USB”). Samsung at 33.

         Shortly before the start of the March 26, 2018 hearing, the Court provided the parties with the following preliminary construction for each the two above-charted groups of disputed terms, respectively: “condition on the USB communication path that is not defined as a valid USB data condition”; and “condition on the D line and D- line that is not defined as a valid USB data condition.”

         (1) The Parties' Positions

         Plaintiff argues that “[b]ecause the signal distinguishes a normal USB hub/host from an alternate power source, the signal need not be defined as illegal or invalid by USB 2.0, it only needs to be one that it [sic, is] not expected from a USB hub/host, i.e., that the USB specification does not define as valid or legal.” Dkt. No. 123 at 11.

         Defendants respond that their proposal “is consistent with the claim language, which, for example, recites an affirmative limitation that the data line condition be an ‘abnormal USB data line condition.'” Dkt. No. 127 at 11-12. Defendants also cite prosecution history in which “the patentees amended their claims to add the ‘abnormal' limitation instead of ‘identification signal, ' arguing that the new claims were different from the related patents.” Id. at 12.

         Plaintiff replies that “Defendants' proposed construction improperly limits the claims to an exemplary embodiment.” Dkt. No. 130 at 5. Plaintiff also argues that “Defendants' prosecution history argument similarly fails because the patentees did not rely on the ‘abnormal' limitation to overcome a rejection.” Id.

         At the March 26, 2018 hearing, the parties did not present any oral argument as to these terms.

         (2) Analysis

         Samsung addressed substantially the same arguments that Defendants have presented here. See, e.g., Dkt. No. 127 at 12 (arguing that “[b]ecause the ‘abnormal' signaling is the essence of the invention, ” it should be limited to the “objective boundar[ies]” set forth in the written description and in the USB 2.0 specification). The Court reaches the same conclusion here as in Samsung for the same reasons set forth in Samsung. See Samsung at 33.

         The authorities cited by Defendants do not compel otherwise. See Dkt. No. 127 at 12 (citing Edwards Lifesciences LLC v. Cook Inc., 582 F.3d 1322, 1329-30 (Fed. Cir. 2009); SafeTCare Mfg., Inc. v. Tele-Made, Inc., 497 F.3d 1262, 1269-70 (Fed. Cir. 2007) (“The inventor makes clear that this attribute of the invention is important in distinguishing the invention over the prior art.”); Honeywell Int'l, Inc. v. ITT Indus., Inc., 452 F.3d 1312, 1318 (Fed. Cir. 2006)).

         Further, the '766 Patent prosecution history cited by Defendants did not involve merely replacing “identification signal” with an “abnormal” condition, as Defendants appear to imply. See Dkt. No. 127 at 12; see also id., Ex. 21, Feb. 13, 2012 Amendment at 6 (replacing all but four words of application claim 1); id., Ex. 18, Mar. 28, 2012 Notice of Allowance, Reasons for Allowance at 2. The prosecution history thus does not set forth any disclaimer or otherwise provide any context that would warrant imposing the narrow interpretation proposed here by Defendants. See Omega Eng'g, Inc. v. Raytek Corp., 334 F.3d 1314, 1324 (Fed. Cir. 2003) (“As a basic principle of claim interpretation, prosecution disclaimer promotes the public notice function of the intrinsic evidence and protects the public's reliance on definitive statements made during prosecution.”) (emphasis added).

         Finally, to whatever extent Defendants are maintaining that the Samsung construction renders the claims indefinite, Defendants have not met their burden of demonstrating indefiniteness. See, e.g., Sonix Tech. Co. v. Publ'ns Int'l, Ltd., 844 F.3d 1370, 1377 (Fed. Cir. 2017) (“Indefiniteness must be proven by clear and convincing evidence.”) (citation omitted).

         The Court therefore hereby construes these disputed terms as set forth in the following chart:

Term

Construction

“abnormal USB data condition [detected at said USB communication path]”

“abnormal data condition on said USB communication path”

“condition on the USB communication path that is not defined as a valid USB data condition”

“abnormal USB data line condition on said D line and said D- line”

“abnormal data line condition on said D line and said D- line”

“condition on the D line and D- line that is not defined as a valid USB data condition”

         G. “USB specification”

“[configured to supply current on the VBUS line without regard to] at least one associated condition specified in a USB specification”[15] ('550 Patent, Cl. 1 and dependent claims)
“[configured to supply current on the VBUS line without regard to] at least one USB Specification imposed limit”[16] ('550 Patent, Cl. 10 and dependent claims)
“[a charging subsystem enabled to draw current/power unrestricted by] at least one predetermined USB Specification limit”[17] ('766 Patent, Cls. 1 and 9 and dependent claims)
“[drawing current in excess of] at least one USB Specification defined limit”[18] ('766 Patent, Cl. 17 and dependent claims)

Plaintiff's Proposed Construction

Defendants' Proposed Construction

FISI adopts the Court's construction from the Samsung litigation. 2:17-cv-00145 (D.I. 140).

Plain and ordinary meaning; no construction necessary

Indefinite

Dkt. No. 103, Ex. A1 at 37 & 46-47; id., Ex. B1 at 10-12 & 23-25; Dkt. No. 123 at 11; Dkt. No. 135, Ex. A1 at 3.

         In Samsung, the Court rejected an indefiniteness challenge as to these terms and construed them to have their plain meaning. Samsung at 38.

         Shortly before the start of the March 26, 2018 hearing, the Court provided the parties with the following preliminary construction: “Plain meaning (Not indefinite).”

         (1) The Parties' Positions

         Plaintiff submits that “the patent makes clear that the relevant limits are what is allotted to a specific device as power flows to it . . . .” Dkt. No. 123 at 11 (citing '111 Patent at 8:11-16).

         Defendants respond that “these terms are defined by disregarding ‘at least one' USB 2.0 current limit, ” “[b]ut the USB 2.0 standard itself already requires that, so the terms make no sense.” Dkt. No. 127 at 11.

         Plaintiff replies that “[i]t would be clear to a POSA [(person of ordinary skill in the art)] that the corresponding claim limitations permit disregarding or violating the applicable limit governing the amount of current or power a USB device may draw in a particular condition or state.” Dkt. No. 130 at 4. Plaintiff submits that Defendants' argument should be rejected because “[a] limit cannot be ‘disregarded' when it is not applicable . . . .” Id. at 4-5. Finally, Plaintiff argues:

The fact that subsequent revisions of the USB specification may exceed USB 2.0 power limits does not establish indefiniteness-it merely demonstrates that others recognized the benefits of the claimed invention and incorporated it into the specification. If a device may draw power without regard to USB 2.0 limits, this limitation is met-even if the device implements a subsequent revision of the specification that permits higher power draw.

Id. at 5.

         At the March 26, 2018 hearing, the parties did not present any oral argument as to these terms.

         (2) Analysis

         Samsung addressed substantially the same arguments that Defendants have presented here. See Samsung at 36-38. The Court reaches the same conclusions here as in Samsung for substantially the same reasons set forth in Samsung. See id.

         The Court therefore hereby expressly rejects Defendants' indefiniteness arguments and hereby construes these terms to have their plain meaning.

         H. “without USB enumeration”

Plaintiff's Proposed Construction

Defendants' Proposed Construction

Plain and ordinary meaning; no construction necessary[19]

“without the occurrence of any of the steps of USB enumeration”

Dkt. No. 103, Ex. B1 at 7 & 21; Dkt. No. 123 at 12; Dkt. No. 135, Ex. A1 at 5. The parties submit that this term appears in Claims 3, 11, and 24 of the '766 Patent and Claims 3 and 12 of the '550 Patent. Dkt. No. 103, Ex. A1 at 76; id., Ex. B1 at 7; Dkt. No. 135, Ex. A1 at 5.

         This term was not presented as a disputed term in Samsung.

         Shortly before the start of the March 26, 2018 hearing, the Court provided the parties with the following preliminary construction: “without the occurrence of all of the steps of USB enumeration.”

         (1) The Parties' Positions

         Plaintiff argues that “[a] POSA would have understood that ‘without USB enumeration' means that not all steps of enumeration are performed.” Dkt. No. 123 at 12 (emphasis added). Likewise, Plaintiff urges that “no embodiment in the patent requires the a [sic] device to draw power without initiating enumeration, as Defendants' construction would require.” Id. at 13.

         Defendants respond that “[t]he specification repeatedly states that the mobile device foregoes participation in the enumeration steps in their entirety after the detection of an identification signal.” Dkt. No. 127 at 14 (citing '550 Patent at 2:8-15, 9:16-19, 9:44-46, 9:65- 10:4 & Fig. 3). Defendants also argue that “FISI does not - because it cannot - point to any disclosure where the identification signal is sent/received after some enumeration steps.” Dkt. No. 127 at 14.

         Plaintiff replies that “[t]he plain meaning of ‘without USB enumeration' means that the process of USB enumeration is not performed, ” and “[i]f any step of the enumeration process is not performed, then there has been no enumeration.” Dkt. No. 130 at 6. Plaintiff emphasizes that “Defendants cite no disclosure that prohibits the invention from performing any steps of enumeration.” Id.

         At the March 26, 2018 hearing, the parties did not present any oral argument as to this term.

         (2) Analysis

         Claims 1 and 3 of the '766 Patent, for example, recite (emphasis added):

1. A mobile device, comprising:
a USB communication path; and
a charging subsystem enabled to draw current unrestricted by at least one predetermined USB Specification limit, said enablement being responsive to an abnormal USB data condition detected at said USB communication path.
3. The device of claim 1, wherein said enabling of the charging subsystem occurs without USB enumeration.

         The parties appear to agree that USB enumeration involves multiple steps. Defendants' proposal, that “without USB enumeration” should be construed as precluding the performance of any step that is involved in USB enumeration, is contrary to the open-ended structure of these claims. See, e.g., Genentech, Inc. v. Chiron Corp., 112 F.3d 495, 501 (Fed. Cir. 1997) (“‘Comprising' is a term of art used in claim language which means that the named elements are essential, but other elements may be added and still form a construct within the scope of the claim.”). Indeed, it seems self-evident, or least reasonably plain, that performance of less than all of the steps of “USB enumeration” would not be “USB enumeration.” A useful analogy in this regard is that if a method claim recited “USB enumeration” as a limitation, and an accused instrumentality performed less than all of the steps of “USB enumeration, ” then the accused instrumentality would not infringe.[20] Cf. Ericsson, Inc. v. D-Link Sys., Inc., 773 F.3d 1201, 1219 (Fed. Cir. 2014) (“A method claim is directly infringed when someone practices every step of the patented method.”).

         Turning to the specification, the parties have cited disclosures regarding operations that can be carried out “without waiting for enumeration”:

When a USB adapter 100 is connected to a mobile device 10, the identification subsystem 108 of the USB adapter 100 preferably provides an identification signal to the mobile device 10 to notify the mobile device 10 that the device 10 is connected to a power source that is not subject to the power limits imposed by the USB specification. Preferably, the mobile device 10 is programmed to recognize the identification signal and therefore recognizes that an identification signal has been transmitted by the USB adapter 100. After recognizing a valid identification signal, the mobile device 10 draws power through the USB adapter 100 without waiting for enumeration or charge negotiation.

'111 Patent at 9:3-14 (emphasis added); see Id. at 9:39-42. Defendants have also cited disclosures in the specification regarding power sources “that are not capable of participating in enumeration” as well as mobile devices that “can forego the enumeration process and charge negotiation process and immediately draw energy from the USB power adapter 100 at a desired rate.” Id. at 1:59-67 & 9:60-65.

         On balance, Defendants have not identified any disclosure in the specification that rises to the level of a lexicography or disclaimer that would warrant precluding performing any step of USB enumeration. See, e.g., GE Lighting Solutions, LLC v. AgiLight, Inc., 750 F.3d 1304, 1310 (Fed. Cir. 2014) (“This is simply not a case where the patentee has disavowed the plain meaning of the term . . . .); id. at 1309-10 (collecting cases); Openwave Sys., Inc. v. Apple Inc., 808 F.3d 509, 513 (Fed. Cir. 2015) (“To find disavowal of claim scope through disparagement of a particular feature, we ask whether the specification goes well beyond expressing the patentee's preference . . . [such that] its repeated derogatory statements about [a particular embodiment] reasonably may be viewed as a disavowal.”) (citations and internal quotation marks omitted); id. at 517 (“There is no doubt a high bar to finding disavowal of claim scope through disparagement of the prior art in the specification.”).

         The Court therefore hereby construes “without USB enumeration” to mean “without the occurrence of all of the steps of USB enumeration.”

         I. “identification signal”

Plaintiff's Proposed Construction

Defendants' Proposed Construction

FISI adopts the Court's construction from the Samsung litigation. 2:17-cv-00145 (D.I. 140).

“signal that identifies a power source type”[21]

“signal that informs the mobile device that the USB adapter is not limited by the power limits imposed by the USB specification”

Dkt. No. 103, Ex. B1 at 3; Dkt. No. 123 at 13; Dkt. No. 135, Ex. A1 at 5. The parties submit that this term appears in Claims 1, 6, 17, and 18 of the '111 Patent, Claims 8-13 of the '586 Patent, and Claims 17 and 19 of the '766 Patent. Dkt. No. 103, Ex. B1 at 3; see Dkt. No. 135, Ex. A1 at 5; see also id., Ex. A1 at 85; Dkt. No. 127 at 13 (“'111, '586: all claims; '766: 17 and 19”).

         In Samsung, the Court construed this term to mean ‚Äúsignal that identifies a power ...


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