Amazon Wins Trial Over Technology to Order
- Freshub claimed Amazon used patent-pending features to copy for placing orders.
- The dispute is resolved through voice command, and scanning is used to make orders.
Amazon.com Inc. was awarded the case in a Texas trial. They were accused of using an Israeli company’s patent-pending “smart kitchen” creations to allow voice commands to buy grocery items online into its Alexa Digital Assistant.
Amazon didn’t violate three patents held by tightly owned Ikan Holdings, LLC’s Freshub unit, a federal court juror in Waco, Texas, said Tuesday.
Freshub stated that the inventions let consumers create shopping lists, create a shopping cart and purchase at their local grocery store, use voice-controlled commands, or scan bar codes for products using the internet-connected device. Amazon was aware of Freshub and its inventions after incorporating it into their Alexa Assistant and Echo smart speakers. The company also made it available to customers of their Whole Foods grocery chain, Freshub claimed.
Amazon claimed that it was manipulating patent applications to ensure that Alexa and Echo covered them before the popular devices were already on the market. Amazon cautioned jurors that winning for Freshub would result in more lawsuits filed by the firm against other tech companies such as Apple Inc. and Google Inc.
Freshub asserted that customers who utilized the technology spent more. Therefore, it was rightfully entitled to $3.50 per unit sold using the technology, which amounts to an amount worth $246 million. Amazon claimed that the patents had a value of up to one million dollars.
The Whole Foods grocery chain, which Amazon bought in 2017, was in discussions with Freshub in 2014. Amazon itself was in discussions with Freshub as far as 2015. One of them was the 2019 demo with Amazon’s general manager of Alexa Shopping, Freshub’s lawyers, and Kramer Levin.
Amazon has denied that it violated any patents and claimed that they were not valid. Freshub hasn’t convinced anyone else to licence its patents or commercialize its concepts, and even companies such as Intel Corp. rebuffed offers to purchase them, Amazon lawyers with Fenwick & West claimed.
Freshub has also accused Amazon of swindling authorities at the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office to obtain patents. The three patents were granted in 2019. However, they were created through an application filed over a decade prior.
Amazon asserted that the initial application was intended for an appliance with a camera capable of recognizing images from products. Freshub dropped the application initially filed in 2005 but then revived the application in 2017 following the announcement that Alexa was released and Echo was available and took advantage of the growing use in the Internet of Things, Amazon claimed.
This year, Amazon tried unsuccessfully to persuade the review board of the patent office to revisit those three patents. According to a relatively new policy that the patent office has adopted, it will not review patents in the district court if the case isn’t sufficiently advanced.
In certain cities, you can ask Alexa to find and add items to your shopping basket by using Whole Foods, Amazon Fresh and Prime Now. To review the quantity, modify the items you have in your cart and then check out, you’ll have to go to either the Amazon app or site.
You’ll need A Prime membership or an Echo device that’s logged to your Amazon account, a valid payment method on file, and an address in an area that offers grocery delivery.
Please follow the following steps:
- You can say things like “Alexa, Add Orange in my Whole Foods cart” or “Alexa, add eggs into my fresh cart.” When Alexa cannot locate the item, a reminder will be placed at the bottom of your cart and an option to search.
- If you’re ready to make your order, visit Amazon.com or the Amazon app, choose your cart, and then proceed to the checkout.