On April 12, according to an order made public in Manhattan federal, District Judge Jed Rakoff has thrown out a lawsuit from International Business Machines Corp (IBM) claiming online pet food retailer Chewy Inc's website and mobile app violated several IBM patents covering improvements to website functionality and targeted advertising, from which IBM would seek at least $83 million in damages.
The judge said Chewy's online services do not infringe the patents for Chewy’s technology functions differently than IBM's.The court also found that one of the IBM patents was invalid for it covered an unpatentable abstract idea and another of the five patents in the case had been invalidated in November. Last year, Florida-based Chewy sued IBM to head off a potential lawsuit and accused tech giant IBM, one of the largest patent owners in the world, of seeking "exorbitant licensing fees for early Internet patents having no value.", after it supposedly rejected a $36 million IBM patent licensing offer. Moreover, IBM was said to have similarly sued other internet-based companies including Twitter Inc, Airbnb Inc and Zillow Group Inc, and that most of them had "basically surrendered" before the trial.