E.D. Texas Mag. Payne: Bandwidth Allocation Patent-Eligible

Claims of a patent directed to “management of bandwidth allocation in a network server” were not directed to an abstract idea, and not invalid under 35 U.S.C. § 101, held Magistrate Judge Payne in a report and recommendation on defendants’ motion to dismiss.  Preferential Networks IP, LLC v. AT&T Mobility, LLC, No. 2:16-cv-01374-JRG-RSP (E.D. Texas  July 15, 2017).

Representative claim 1 of U.S. Patent No. 8,577,994 recites:

A method, comprising:

receiving, at a first computer system, information indicating a request to transfer data to a second computer system;

the first computer system determining a quantity of other data previously transferred to the second computer system; and

in response to said determining, the first computer system throttling transfer of the data to the second computer system, wherein the throttling is based at least in part on the determined quantity of other data previously transferred to the second computer system and comprises:

transmitting, to the second computer system, a first portion of the requested data at a first effective rate; and

determining to delay a transmission of a second, subsequent portion of the requested data to the second computer system in order to cause the second portion to be transmitted to the second computer system at a second effective rate that is slower than the first effective rate.

Judge Payne rejected the defendants argument that the claims of the ’994 patent “cover the abstract idea of slowing a delivery by delaying a portion of the delivery, based, in part, on past deliveries.”  Instead, considering the claims as a whole, they are “directed to the manner by which data is transmitted between two computer systems—which is not a law of nature, a natural phenomena [sic], or an abstract idea.”

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