The USPTO issued a memorandum to patent examiners re. subject matter eligibility relating to software patent claims. In the memorandum, the USPTO outlined two recent Federal Circuit decisions in McRO, Inc. dba Planet Blue v. Bandai Namco Games America Inc., 120 USPQ2d 1091 (Fed. Cir. 2016), BASCOM Global Internet Services v. AT&T Mobility LLC, 827 F.3d 1341 (Fed. Cir. 2016), and noted that guidance re. Amdocs (Israel) Ltd. v. Openet Telecom, Inc., No. 2015-1180 (Fed. Cir. Nov. 1, 2016) will be forthcoming. Both McRO and BASCOM decisions provide examples as to when software claims would be found to be eligible under current guidelines.
The Federal Circuit yesterday, in Amdocs (Israel) Ltd. v. Openet Telecom, Inc., 2015-1180 (Nov. 1, 2016), upheld the patent eligibility under 35 U.S.C. 101 of a software patent, because it constituted a technical improvement over prior art. This most recent decision on software patent eligibillity (i.e., abstract idea jurisprudence) will hopefully reaffirm many software patent practitioner's understanding that a technical solution to a technical problem is still eligible subject matter in view of the Supreme Court's Alice and Mayo framework.