1. Is INDECT being sued by Park Assist?
NO. INDECT is NOT being sued by Park Assist. INDECT is suing Park Assist for initiating sham litigation and engaging in unfair and unlawful anticompetitive behavior.
2. Did Park Assist invent camera-based parking guidance?
NO. Parking systems using cameras in various ways happened in 2008, and possibly earlier.
3. Does Park Assist’s patent cover all camera-based parking guidance technology?
NO. Park Assist owns US Patent No. 9,594,956 (the patent). This patent applies to a specific process of managing a plurality of parking spaces. It requires a number of specific steps in addition to use of cameras.
Click here to see the full Park Assist patent.
4. What is the exact process that has been patented by Park Assist?
The Park Assist patent applies to a specific process of managing a plurality of parking spaces. This method has 10 steps that need to be followed. All 10 steps of the process need to be performed in order for the patent to be infringed, if one or more steps are missing then the patent is NOT infringed.
“The United States Patent and Trademark Office only granted Park Assist the patent after Park Assist agreed to include two key limitations. These limitations are:
- The use of human override of mistaken determinations that a space is occupied when a space is actually vacant.
- Enforcement of parking permits when a space is occupied by an unauthorized vehicle.”
Both of these steps MUST be performed in order for the patent to be infringed.
Source: Memorandum of Points and Authorities in Support of ACE Parking Management, Inc’s Motion for Rule 11 Sanctions
Click here to view Park Assist’s patented process. Refer to pages 28-29 to view what the patent actually covers.
5. Does the INDECT camera-based parking guidance system infringe the Park Assist patent?
“NO. It is impossible for the INDECT camera-based parking guidance system (the UPSOLUT) to infringe the Park Assist patent because the system is fully automated and does not rely on human intervention to function properly.
There is no capability within the UPSOLUT system for anyone – a user, an INDECT employee, or any other person – to change the current status of a given parking space as determined by the UPSOLUT system’s algorithm either locally or at the network level. A parking space whose current status is “occupied” cannot have its status manually changed to “vacant” nor vice versa.
The UPSOLUT system is 99% accurate or better when deployed. On the rare occasion when the UPSOLUT system makes an incorrect determination and incorrectly sets the current status of a parking space to “occupied”, there is no capability to override or otherwise correct that current status.”
Source: Affidavit by Dale Fowler
6. I have an INDECT ultrasonic parking guidance system, does the patent affect me?
NO. The Park Assist patent only applies to a specific method of managing a plurality of parking spaces with a camera-based parking guidance system. Park Assist does not claim that the patent applies to the use of ultrasonic sensors.
7. If I install an INDECT camera-based parking guidance system will I be infringing the Park Assist patent?
NO. The INDECT camera-based parking guidance system (the UPSOLUT) does NOT infringe the Park Assist patent. It is impossible for the UPSOLUT to infringe the Park Assist patent because it is fully automated and does not rely on human intervention for proper functioning.
8. I have an UPSOLUT system installed already, am I infringing the Park Assist patent?
NO. The UPSOLUT system does not breach the Park Assist patent. The Park Assist patent applies to a specific method of managing a plurality of parking spaces. The method has 10 steps. All 10 steps need to be performed in order for the patent to be infringed. Refer to question 3 above.
9. What is the difference between the INDECT UPSOLUT system and the Park Assist camera-based parking guidance system claimed in the Park Assist patent?
INDECT’s parking guidance systems combine the most advanced parking space sensors with industry-leading data management technology to offer drivers a safer, more convenient parking experience while helping parking owners operate their parking assets more efficiently and profitably.
The UPSOLUT camera-based system employs optical sensors for under-cover car parks that capture, monitor and show the status of multiple parking spaces. The UPSOLUT system is completely automated and does not depend on human intervention to operate.
Using INDECT’s sophisticated detection processes and algorithms, the UPSOLUT sensor determines whether a parking space is occupied or vacant. The UPSOLUT sensor then uploads that information to the server. All detection processes are carried out on-board by the UPSOLUT sensor processor, allowing the UPSOLUT to operate correctly even if there is no network connection to the server.
The UPSOLUT system does not have any capability for any user to override, or otherwise correct, a current status as determined by the system’s algorithm.
For further information click here.
Assuming Park Assist’s camera-based parking guidance system follows the patented process, human override and correction of inaccurate system determinations are fundamental to the Park Assist system.
10. Why is Park Assist suing San Diego Airport and ACE Parking Management?
“Park Assist falsely alleges that:
- San Diego International Airport’s Terminal 2 Parking Plaza uses human review and override of automatic determinations by the system – IT DOES NOT
- The Airport Parking Plaza allocates areas for permit parking and punishes unauthorized parkers – IT DOES NOT
Park Assist’s complaint contains factually baseless allegations and asserts things that do not exist. This frivolous claim by Park Assist is simply an improper attempt to eliminate competition from INDECT in camera-based parking guidance systems.”
Source: Memorandum of points and authorities in support of ACE Parking Management Inc’s motion for Rule 11 sanctions filed 03/19/19
11. Why is INDECT suing Park Assist?
“INDECT is taking legal action against Park Assist for initiating a sham lawsuit and engaging in unfair and unlawful anticompetitive behavior with the intent to wrongfully gain business and market share by falsely, and in bad faith, claiming that the INDECT system infringes the Park Assist patent.
INDECT does NOT infringe any claim of the Park Assist patent. We strongly believe that Park Assist should NOT be permitted to use sham litigation as a cudgel to threaten innocent users and prospective users of INDECT products nor should they be allowed to tortiously interfere with a competitor’s business or prospective economic advantage.”
Source: Complaint for Declaratory Relief, Preliminary and Permanent Injunctive Relief and Damages
12. What is a sham lawsuit?
A sham lawsuit is one that is objectively baseless in the sense that no reasonable litigant could realistically expect success on the merits. A sham lawsuit is a concealed attempt to interfere directly with the business relationships of a competitor through the use of governmental process.