When I had a long podcast chat with Rick Cope at InfoComm back in June, the founder and CEO of Nanolumens made it very clear he was about to go to legal war with a number of (mostly or all) Chinese manufacturers who were marketing LED display products that seem to borrow on Nano’s flexible designs.
Or as Cope describes them: “cheap imitations that ultimately degrade the trust customers place in LED technology.”
Now Cope has issued a formal statement, in a press release, essentially saying they’ve got 18 patents on this sort of thing, with more pending, and they intend to start enforcing them through the courts.
“As NanoLumens moves forward with legal actions,” says Cope in the press release, “I urge customers and system integrators to avoid the risks inherent in buying or using display solutions infringing upon our company’s IP rights and therefore risking legal action.”
“We have spent significant time and money innovating and creating quality, curved products for which we have been issued multiple patents,” he adds. “The marketplace is growing increasingly confusing and convoluted with the introduction of often times lesser quality visualization platform technologies every week. The most successful businesses will be those that can best leverage their intellectual property into practical interactive visualization solutions that deliver persistent value throughout the platforms’ life-cycles.”
“Unfortunately, a number of manufacturers are selling products which violate our IP and flood the market with cheap imitations that ultimately degrade the trust customers place in LED technology as a whole.”
The company says US Patents number 8,963,895, 9,013,367, 9,058,755, 9,159,707, 9,326,620, and others enable NanoLumens to build large, flexible, modular display systems in any size, shape, or curvature. The company’s proprietary technology is applicable to a number of key performance characteristics of modular display systems.
“It is difficult to achieve seamlessness in a large flexible display that is built from many smaller display modules because of the extraordinary sensitivity of the human visual system in detecting tiny misalignments of vertical and horizontal patterns,” Cope explains. “Our patented technology enables our products to achieve durable, repeatable fine alignments of adjacent display modules, resulting in beautiful seamless displays of any size, shape or curvature.
I definitely saw what certainly seemed like cheap imitations when I was wandering around the endless rows of ISE, last February in Amsterdam – marketed by companies completely unfamiliar to me.
If there’s any doubt Cope is up for a fight, you should know he comes out of the military, was a combat commander, and a special ops advisor to General Schwarzkopf in the 1st Gulf War.
Dave Haynes is the founder and editor of Sixteen:Nine, an online publication that has followed the digital signage industry for some 14 years. Dave does strategic advisory consulting work for many end-users and vendors, and also writes for many of them. He’s based near Halifax, Nova Scotia, on Canada’s east coast.