The Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit (CAFC) maintained on Sept. 13 the ruling of the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) that two out of First Face’s three patents are valid. First Face filed a patent infringement lawsuit regarding the three patents against Apple in July last year, the PTAB ruled so, and then Apple lodged an inter partes review appeal with the CAFC.
First Face is a South Korean startup that has researched and developed user and computer interfaces since 2011. It currently has about 50 registered user authentication and lock screen advertising patents in South Korea, the United States, China, Japan and Europe.
The litigation between First Face and Apple dates back to April 2018, when the former filed a patent infringement lawsuit regarding the three patents with the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California. At that time, First Face claimed that the touch ID technology of the iPhone 5S, fifth-generation iPad and so on is in violation of its U.S. patents. Apple brought the case to the PTAB in January 2019.
It is still unknown whether Apple will lodge an appeal with the Supreme Court of the United States. This is because the appeal application itself is likely to be rejected. The court has accepted such applications only in 3 percent or so of patent infringement lawsuits. This means the matter of concern now is the size of the compensation First Face can get.