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Gambling: Playtech Wins Patent Case
One of the industry's largest online gambling software developers, Playtech plc, found itself among several companies named in a patent hearing in the UK in June and July. The case against the companies ultimately failed when the plaintiff's patent was adjudged to be invalid.
Case number HC07C03466 was heard in the Patents Court in the High Court of Justice, Chancery Division in London before The Honourable Mr. Justice Lewison and pitted an Isle of Man company titled Cranway Limited (the plaintiff) against Playtech Cyprus Ltd., Playtech Software Ltd., Techplay Marketing Ltd., PTVB Management Ltd., Tote Credit Ltd., Totesport NV., and Totesport Alderney Ltd.
Appearing for Cranway were Michael Tappin QC and Brian Nicholson (instructed by Herbert Smith LLP), whilst the defendant companies were represented by Daniel Alexander QC and Adrian Speck (instructed by Linklaters LLP) over five hearing dates in June 2009 and one in July this year.
In introducing the case, the judge summarised Cranway's claim, saying that the company claimed its patent for on-line gambling (EP 0625760B1) had been infringed by Playtech and the Tote. It was not necessary to distinguish between the various Playtech corporate entities or between the various Tote corporate entities, he commented.
"The invention relates to an interactive, real time, realistic 'home' computer gaming system using general purpose computers. Aspects of the invention concern auditing and security to ensure fairness for players and prevent players defeating the outcome of a game; fast, efficient communication to enable reliable, low cost, real time, realistic operation; accounting; and enabling players to play a variety of games," he said.
"Playtech and the Tote deny infringement; but also say that the patent is invalid for three reasons:
i) The claimed invention is not new;
ii) The claimed invention is obvious;
iii) The claimed invention is not in fact an invention.
Both sides called expert witnesses; in Cranway's case Stacy Friedman, a casino game designer and inventor, computer software systems engineer, and gaming mathematician. Playtech presented Professor Ian Leslie, Professor of Computer Science at the University of Cambridge Computer Laboratory.
Leslie pointed out that the patent in question is written in very basic terms with little or no explanation of the details of the systems it describes or how they might be implemented: it is concerned with the functionality of the system rather than details of its design.
Cranway described the patent as: "This invention relates to an interactive, real time, realistic "home" computer gaming system using general purpose computers. … Aspects of the invention concern auditing and security to ensure fairness for players and prevent players defeating the outcome of a game; fast, efficient communication to enable reliable, low cost, real time, realistic operation; accounting; and enabling players to play a variety of games."
Betradar Launches US Sports Betting Solutions -
With only a few weeks to go until the betting and gambling world descends on ICE in London, Betradar have today announced that they will be launching a comprehensive range of tools and services to any company that will be looking to provide sports betting in a post-PASPA United States.
Final 12 For MPNPT Morocco -
Sunday on the MPN Poker Tour Morocco will see several trophies awarded at the Mazagan Beach Resort, with the largest going to the Main Event champion along with a prize of MAD 400,000 (c.€35,400).
MPNPT Morocco Updates -
Leading the 104 combined survivors from both flights is still Said El-Yousfi with 272,000 chips; visit the MPN Poker Tour blog for an end-of-day recap and full chip counts.
MPN Poker Tour Morocco Day 1A -
The MPN Poker Tour has returned to Morocco this week (January 11-14), featuring the MAD 1.5 million guaranteed Main Event, accompanying side events, and the activities and parties for which this tour has now become known on two continents.
2018 MPN Poker Classic -
The MPN announces the return of The Classic tournament series this January. The series is back following its successful €350,000 guaranteed debut in 2017. This time €500,000 is guaranteed, along with a once in a lifetime trip to Monaco for the Classic Champion.
PDC and Sportradar Renew Deal -
Following this month’s hugely successful World Championship, the Professional Darts Corporation (PDC) and long-standing partners Sportradar have renewed their multi-faceted cooperation that will see the leader in sports data and content continuing in their role as official data
Poker Yaar Joins MPN -
Available through download, instant play and mobile, Pokeryaar.com is live with Omaha, Hold’em and Five-Card poker variants, alongside MPN’s Fish Party, the industry’s only progressive jackpot SNGs.
New MPN Poker Rooms Tower Torneos -
Impressed with Microgaming, having already integrated with the Quickfire platform to gain access to some of the industry’s best gaming content, Tower Torneos has extended the relationship with poker.<
NY Rangers vs. Devils on 12/21 -
When the Devils and Rangers hit the ice on Thursday (7 PM ET on MSG), so too will two of the league’s top netminders. After a slow start to the season, Henrik Lundqvist has returned to his form of old. Through 29 games, he’s posted a 2.59 goals against average, and a .920 save percentage.
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