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Alphabet drops all but one patent claim in its case against Uber

From Engadget - July 7, 2017

The patents are not actually Waymo's main concern in this lawsuit -- the company claims Uber stole trade secrets relating to its self-driving LiDAR technology when it hired former Alphabet employees last year. Waymo says former self-driving leader Anthony Levandowski downloaded more than 14,000 confidential design files before leaving Alphabet and founding his own self-driving start-up, which was swiftly bought out by Uber.

US District Judge William Alsup asked Waymo in June to streamline the patent side of its case from 121 claims of theft to fewer than 10, so as not to overwhelm a jury. He even suggested Waymo drop the patents from its case entirely.

Waymo today ditched any claims against Uber's Spider LiDAR design, noting the ride-hailing company stopped using that particular model. Waymo now claims just one instance of patent infringement against Uber's Fuji LiDAR technology.

"We found after fighting for discovery a device created by Anthony Levandowski at Uber that infringed Waymo patents," a Waymo spokesperson tells Engadget. "Uber has assured the court in statements made under penalty of perjury that it no longer uses and will not use that device, so we have narrowed the issues for trial by dismissing the patent claims as to that device, with the right to re-file suit if needed. We continue to pursue a patent claim against Uber's current generation device and our trade secret claims, which are not at all affected by this stipulated dismissal. We look forward to trial."

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