FlightAware has received many calls & emails from concerned FlightAware users wanting to know how the recent FlightPrep patent news affects us. We normally would not comment on this kind of matter, but we have decided to provide some insight from FlightAware’s perspective due to the high level of interest and potential impact on the industry.
In August and September of 2010, FlightPrep repeatedly contacted FlightAware in order to discuss its newly issued patent. Because our expertise is in software innovation rather than patent litigation, we referred the matter to our patent attorney. He investigated the matter in depth, and provided our response to FlightPrep informing them that FlightAware did not infringe their patent. We have received no further communication from FlightPrep.
FlightPrep’s patent does not broadly cover all forms of flight planning using the Internet. Indeed the Patent Office Examiner considered prior art that showed flight planning using the Internet, both with and without waypoints. The scope of FlightPrep’s patent claims is thus narrower, and requires details that FlightAware does not do.
We remain focused and committed to developing & providing the best aviation software that we can. We encourage everyone, including FlightPrep, to do the same. The recent patent news will not affect our innovation or the services that we provide.
Thanks to all for your support.
Founder & CEO, FlightAware