US Federal Court Tosses Out Bingo Patents

Posted on Sep 01, 2014

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US computer patents for computer bingo were tossed out as the US Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit agreed with a lower court's decision to invalidate two patents, numbered 6,398,646 and 6,656,045.

"Generally, the claims recite storing a player's preferred sets of bingo numbers; retrieving one such set upon demand, and playing that set; while simultaneously tracking the player's sets, tracking player payments, and verifying winning numbers," stated a three-judge panel. "Variants between the claims include display capabilities and options to purchase sets of bingo numbers."

The issues began over a disagreement between two online bingo service providers, Planet Bingo and Video King.

In 2002, a company known as Melange Computer Services was granted the approval for the patents which it eventually sold to Planet Bingo in 2006.

Planet Bingo sued Video King over the use of such patents causing the court to toss out the patents claiming that bingo management "consists solely of mental steps which can be carried out by a human using pen and paper."
By Glo Wood

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