In the ongoing suit of Waymo vs Uber, Waymo has decided to drop 3 out of the 4 patent infringement claims against Uber. Waymo is a spin-off from Google’s self-driving car project when the overall corporate was restructured to Alphabet.
Waymo decided to drop 3 out of the 4 patent claims after the US District Judge William Alsup has requested both Waymo and Uber to narrow the key issues of the trial. The 3 patents which were dropped were related to a LiDAR design which Uber used the code name “Spider” but is now no longer using it.
The remaining patent claim relates to the LiDAR design which Uber calls “Fuji” according to a report by Bloomberg.
“Waymo’s retreat on three of their four patent claims is yet another sign that they have overpromised and can’t deliver. Not only have they uncovered zero evidence of any of the 14,000 files in question coming to Uber, they now admit that Uber’s LiDAR design is actually very different than theirs. Faced with this hard truth, Waymo has resorted to floating conspiracy theories not rooted in fact, doing everything they can to put the focus on sensation rather than substance.” said Uber in a statement to Bloomberg.
What makes the case interesting is that most of Waymo’s case against Uber is about trade secrets and not so much on patents. Hence the strategy to drop the non-crucial portions of the case.
LiDAR, sometimes known as Light Detection and Ranging, is used in self-driving cars to detect the distances of objects around the car at a 360-degree angle. To find out more about LiDAR, click on this link.