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Ceiva Sues FrameMedia, Digital Spectrum

6/16/2008 12:50:00 PM Eastern

Los Angeles — Digital frame maker Ceiva Logic has filed a patent infringement lawsuit against Frame Media and Digital Spectrum Solutions that could have far-reaching ramifications for the future of Internet-connected digital photo frames.

The suit, filed in the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California, alleges that Frame Media’s FrameChannel photo service — which lets Internet-connected frames receive photos and other content from the Internet — and Digital Spectrum’s Web-enabled photo frames infringe on one of Ceiva’s patents.

Ceiva is asking the court to award treble damages for any willful infringement, and for an injunction to stop Frame Media and Digital Spectrum Solutions from selling products/services that infringe on the patent.

Frame Media’s FrameChannel services are used in frames sold by Digital Spectrum Solutions, D-Link, Samsung, Momento and Photovu. While only Digital Spectrum Solutions was targeted in the suit, other firms could potentially be in the cross-hairs in the future, said attorney Gary Heckler of The Heckler Law Group, which is representing Ceiva.

Depending on how the judge rules, the suit could have far-reaching consequences. According to Heckler, any frame that connects to the Internet to receive content could potentially be infringing. “The infringement is independent of the image-transport mechanism involved — the patent isn’t limited to a [specific] protocol.”

A number of manufacturers, including Kodak and Pandigital, market frames that connect to the Internet and display images.

A court date was not set as of press time. FrameMedia and Digital Spectrum Solutions did not respond to a request for comment.