Digest of Sightsound Technologies, LLC v. Apple Inc., No. 2015-1159 (Fed. Cir. Dec. 15, 2015) (precedential). On appeal from the P.T.A.B. Before Lourie, Dyk, Hughes.

Procedural Posture: Patentee appealed the Patent Trial and Appeal Board’s final decision in a covered business method review that all challenged claims are obvious. CAFC affirmed.

  • Jurisdiction – Appellate Review: The decision whether to initiate a covered business patent post-grant review is not appealable to the CAFC, but the final decision is subject to review.
  • Covered Business Methods: The Board did not err by concluding that a “financial activity” not directed to money management or banking can constitute a “financial product or service” within the meaning of the statute. Additionally, the Board did not err in concluding that a combination of known technologies does not amount to a “technological invention” within the meaning of the statute.
  • Claim Construction: The Board did not err in finding that Patentee’s reading of “secondary memory” to exclude all removable media was not supported by the specification. The Board’s conclusion was also supported under the doctrine of claim differentiation.
  • Obviousness: The Board was not wrong in finding obviousness because the prior art references taught every limitation of the primary claims and themselves manifested a reason to combine them, and because there was no nexus between the commercial success of the iTunes Music Store and the claimed invention.