Hewlett-Packard Appeals Ruling in Patent Dispute with Cornell University
Hewlett-Packard (HP) said today that it has filed an appeal to a recent patent dispute judgment that awarded Cornell University US $53 million in damages.
The Palo Alto, Calif., computer maker said in a prepared statement that it will increase its cash reserve "to reflect the latest developments in the case" and that it expects to record a 1 to 2 cent charge per share to its second quarter 2009 earnings. The company advised investors that, excluding the one-time charge, its current financial forecast remains unchanged.
On 30 March, the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of New York issued post-trial rulings in the case (Cornell University et al. v. Hewlett-Packard Co.) that reduced the original jury award to $53 million from $184 million.
The dispute concerns Cornell's claims that a family of HP microprocessors, as well as the servers and workstations incorporating those processors, infringed a patent that describes a way of processing instructions developed by the university's researchers in the 1980s. The Cornell patent described a method of accelerating microprocessor performance by performing multiple functions simultaneously (or "multiprocessing"). The university claims HP incorporated the multiprocessing method in the PA-8000 line of processors introduced in 1996 without its permission.
The Cornell patent expired in 2006, so it should not affect any further HP products, according to the company.
The Ithaca, N.Y., university had not released a statement as of this writing.