SAN FRANCISCO — A district court has dismissed a dispute over a
copyright infringement between tech companies Synopsis and ATopTech.
documents from the U.S. District Court of the
Northern District of California show that Synopsys, a global software
company, first filed a complaint in November 2013 where it alleged
that ATopTech had infringed on its patent.
The dispute was over software tools that were used in the design
of integrated circuits as both companies produce software for the
place-and-route function in computer-chip design. Their software
plans the layout and electrical connections between the chip’s
components. In a news release, Synopsis claimed
ATopTech had used their PrimeTime command set in the Aprisa product.
Synopsys submitted the same claims in the First Supplemental Amended
Complaint that was filed in January 2016.
its defense, according to justia.com,
ATopTech based their claim on that fact that both companies had
entered products in a Broadcom Corporation competition. Aprisa won
the competition and ATopTech pointed out that Synopsys must have
figured it out as Broadcom was a major customer to them.
In March 2016, a jury granted
Synopsys $30.4 million in damages. At that time, ATopTech announced
its plans to contest the verdict.
At the end of July, the court
held a bench trial regarding ATopTech’s affirmative defense of
equitable estoppel, court documents stated. Court findings
were issued in October.
In the end, the claims were dismissed
with prejudice on Dec. 28, and each side agreed to pay their own fees
and costs associated to the claim.
Earlier in December, the court
had issued a permanent injunction against ATopTech, which prohibited
the company from developing, using, selling, offering to sell,
licensing or distributing any product that has PrimeTime report
formats, some non-SDC commands, variables or attributes. The company
was also ordered to stop offering support for these products after
Copyright expert and attorney Erik Syverson of Raines
Felman LLP said these types of cases were becoming more and more
“Especially in light of reforms in patent law that make
it very difficult to protect software products with patents,”
Syverson told The Northern California Record.
becomes a very effective and much cheaper way to protect rights in
Syverson said there was nothing outstanding about the
dispute between Synopsis and ATopTech.
“It looks like the jury
or court found liability and damages so naturally, a permanent
injunction should issue,” he said, adding it seemed like the
Synopsys is the 15th-largest software
company globally, according to a news
release. It works in electronic design
automation and semiconductor IP. According to the company's website,
the company's customers are Silicon Valley companies who develop
ATopTech Inc. works in physical-design solutions,
according to its website.
Experts in electronic-design automation physical-design founded it
Syverson was named a Super Lawyer by Super Lawyers magazine in
2012, 2013, 2014 and 2015, according to his profile on raineslaw.com.
He earned his law degree from Loyola Law School in 2002 and has a
Bachelor of Arts in history from the University of Michigan.