On October 29, 2021, the ITC issued a Notice of Investigation in Certain Barcode Scanners, Mobile Computers With Barcode Scanning Capabilities, Scan Engines, and Components Thereof (Inv. No. 337-TA-1285).
By way of background, this investigation is based on a September 29, 2021 complaint filed by Honeywell International Inc. of Charlotte, North Carolina; Hand Held Products, Inc. of Charlotte, North Carolina; and Metrologic Instruments, Inc. of Charlotte, North Carolina (collectively, "Complainants") alleging a violation of section 337 by Respondents Zebra Technologies Corporation of Lincolnshire, Illinois and Symbol Technologies, Inc. of Holtsville, New York (collectively, "Respondents") in the unlawful importation and/or sale in the U.S. of certain barcode scanners, mobile computers with barcode scanning capabilities, scan engines, and components thereof by reason of infringement of certain claims of U.S. Patent Nos. 7,568,628 ("the '628 patent"); 7,770,799 ("the '799 patent"); 8,794,520 ("the '520 patent"); 9,576,169 ("the '169 patent"); and 10,721,429 ("the '429 patent").
According to the complaint, the '628 patent generally relates to a complementary metal oxide semiconductor (CMOS) based image reader, e.g., barcode scanning device, for collecting image data using global shutter technology, and processing the image data to decode barcode symbols in the image data; the '799 patent generally relates to a barcode reading and processing device for barcode symbols (e.g., barcode scanning devices) that include in a hand held housing a color image sensor that can be used to obtain color images such as photographs, and a monochrome image sensor that can be used to obtain monochrome images of decodable symbols such as barcodes that can be decoded by the device; the '520 patent generally relates to determining the location of a decodable indicia in an image and selectively using information from that location to adjust imaging parameters for subsequent images; the '169 patent generally relates to an image reader with an image sensor that operates in global shutter mode to capture and use image data to decode indicia, like barcodes, and to identify textures within image data, like handwriting or print characters, that can be extracted; and the '429 patent generally relates to a complementary metal oxide semiconductor (CMOS) based image reader, e.g., barcode scanning device, for collecting image data using global shutter technology, and to identify and decode barcode symbols within the image data. The accused products are Respondents' barcode scan engines and scanners (such as hand-held and stationary scanners), mobile computers with barcode scanning capabilities (such as hand-held, tablet, and wearable computers), and components thereof (such as circuit boards with barcode scanning capabilities). Complainants are requesting that the Commission issue limited exclusion orders and permanent cease-and-desist orders directed to Respondents. According to the Notice of Investigation, the Office of Unfair Import Investigations will not participate as a party in the investigation. Lastly, Chief ALJ Charles E. Bullock issued a notice indicating that ALJ Monica Bhattacharyya will preside in the investigation.
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