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Alarm.com, Inc. v. Securenet Technologies

United States District Court, D. Delaware

April 6, 2018

ALARM.COM, INC., ET AL. Plaintiffs,
v.
SECURENET TECHNOLOGIES, Defendant.

          ORDER CONSTRUING THE TERMS OF U.S. PATENT NQS. 7, 885, 635; 8, 073, 931;8, 473, 619; and 8, 478, 844. [1]

         After considering the submissions of the parties and hearing oral argument on the matter, IT IS HEREBY ORDERED, ADJUDGED, and DECREED that, as used in the asserted claims of U.S. Patent Numbers 7, 885, 635 ("the '635 Patent"), 8, 073, 931 ("the '931 Patent"), 8, 473, 619 ("the '619 Patent"), and 8, 478, 844 ("the '844 Patent"):

1. The term "automatically" and variants including "automatically establishing, " "automatically discovering, " "automatically. . . integrating, " "automatically installs, " "automatically configures" in the '619, '844, '931, and '635 patents is construed to mean "without user input."[2]
2. The term "gateway" in the '619 and '844 patents is construed to be "a device at a first location for interconnecting a local area network and a separate security panel at a first location to a server at a second location."[3]
3. The term "connection management component" in the '619 and '844 patents is construed as a means-plus-function term. The claimed functions are: "automatically establishing a wireless coupling with a separate security system" and "forming a security network by automatically discovering the security system components of a security system and integrating communications and functions of the security system components into the security network." The corresponding structure is: "software executing on a processor using the algorithms shown in Figures 12 and 14." [4]

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Notes:

[1] All docket citations refer to Civil Action No. 15-807-GMS. The abbreviation "Tr." refers to the transcript from the Markman Hearing on March 20, 2018, D.I. 91.

[2] The disputed term should be construed as "without user input" because that construction comports with both the description of the term in the asserted patent and its plain and ordinary meaning. "In some cases, the ordinary meaning of claim language as understood by a person of skill in the art may be readily apparent even to lay judges, and claim construction in such cases involves little more than the application of the widely accepted meaning of commonly understood words." Phillips v. AWH Corp., 415 F.3d 1303, 1314 (Fed. Cir. 2005) (internal citations omitted).

Defendant indicated at the Markman Hearing that if "without user input, " is synonymous with without human input or intervention then they are "fine with that in terms of what the plain and ordinary meaning might be." Markman Hr'g Tr. 29:8-13. The parties agree that "automatically" requires no user input and that "there is no need to manually reprogram the security system components during the discovering and integration stage." Markman Hr'g Tr. 15:2-5. The parties also agree that the meaning of "user" or "user input" means human beings and that no human input or intervention is allowed. Markman Hr'g Tr. 17:2-6; 29:8-13, 31:1, 37:21-38:17. Because the parties have agreed that "user" means no human intervention, the court gives the term its plain and ordinary meaning of "without user input."

[3]The parties' dispute centers on whether the "gateway" is separate from an existing security panel. Markman Hr'g Tr. 42:21-25. Prior to the Markman, the parties agreed that "security system" means "a security panel and one or more components operatively coupled to the security panel." (D.I. 85.) Defendant argues that the "operatively" adjective means the security system must be operable. Markman Hr'g Tr. 43:16-18. Defendant argues that the security panel is separate from the gateway based on the intrinsic evidence, Plaintiffs' statements during inter partes review ("IPR") proceedings, and the disavowal in prior litigation by Plaintiffs. Markman Hr'g Tr. 43:1-2, 19-20. The court is cognizant of Defendant's argument that Plaintiffs asserted a different proposed construction of this term in previous litigation, but decides the construction in the instant case based on intrinsic evidence. That said, the claims indicate that the "gateway" is separate from the security system. '619 Patent, Claim 1; Markman Hr'g Tr. 44:19-22. Claim 1 states that:

a gateway located at a first location; a connection management component coupled to the gateway and automatically establishing a wireless coupling with a security system installed at the first location . . .

'619 Patent, Claim 1. The claim, therefore, suggests that the "security system" is already "installed" when the "gateway" establishes a connection to the security system. Similarly, Claim 1 of the '844 Patent explains that the security system exists when the "gateway" is coupled to the local area network ("LAN") and says "wherein the first location includes a security system comprising a plurality of security system components. . ." '844 Patent, Claim 1. The specification adds further support that the "gateway" is separate from the "security panel" explaining that:

... an iHub gateway (also referred to herein as the gateway, the iHub of the iHub client) that couples or integrates into a home network (e.g., LAN) and communicates directly with the home security panel.

'619 Patent at 4:34-47. The court, therefore, finds that the "gateway" is separate from the security system based on the intrinsic record and construes the term to mean "a device at a first location for interconnecting a local area network and a separate security panel at a first ...


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