Light Reading
British giant files patent infringement claims against a number of US telecoms for passing gas

BT Says US Carriers Full of Hot Air

Light Reading
News Analysis
Light Reading
6/11/2003
50%
50%

British Telecommunications plc (BT) (NYSE: BTY; London: BTA) isn't too happy about the way some of its U.S. competitors have been passing gas.

Well, sort of. Specifically, BT is picking a legal fight with several U.S. phone companies over a patent that describes a method of installing fiber optic lines in telecom networks. Earlier this month, the carrier filed suits in a Delaware court against SBC Communications Inc. (NYSE: SBC), Qwest Communications International Inc. (NYSE: Q), Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE: VZ), Broadwing Inc. (NYSE: BRW), Touch America Holdings Inc. (NYSE: TAA), and Level 3 Communications Inc. (Nasdaq: LVLT).

"BT takes the protection of its extensive and valuable intellectual property assets very seriously," writes a BT spokeswoman, via email. "We have approached the companies concerned over their use of BT's blown cable patents but, in the absence of satisfactory responses, have litigated to enforce our rights."

The patents in question -- 4691896 and 4948097 -- describe a way of sending glass fibers through conduit by, quite literally, passing gas through the conduit or pathway that the fiber needs to follow. The gas needed, according to the patent, is typically nitrogen or air.

The patents, in typical pointy-headed terms, describe how a carrier can move the optical fibers along a path by "fluid drag of a gaseous medium passed through the pathway in the desired direction of advance." [Ed. note: Thanks, Sherman! You're welcome, Mr. Peabody!]

This fiber installation method is said to be easier and put less strain on the optical cables and fibers than conventional methods, which include pulling cable with a rope through a cable duct, the patents claim. In addition, blowing cable makes it easier to add fibers and wires to routes where more capacity is needed.

The lawsuits' defendants couldn't be reached immediately for comment.

— Phil Harvey, Senior Editor, Light Reading

(10)  | 
Comment  | 
Print  | 
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
Page 1 / 2   >   >>
deweyduck
50%
50%
deweyduck,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 1:48:45 AM
re: BT Says US Carriers Full of Hot Air
I thought blowing network fiber down a gas pipeline a Williams technique.

cyber_techy
50%
50%
cyber_techy,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/4/2012 | 11:56:03 PM
re: BT Says US Carriers Full of Hot Air
Assuming that the gas that Qwest, Verizon, etc. passed has long gone, how is BT going to prove it in the court
pavlovsdog
50%
50%
pavlovsdog,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/4/2012 | 11:56:01 PM
re: BT Says US Carriers Full of Hot Air
would certainly relieve the fiber glut :-)
optical
50%
50%
optical,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/4/2012 | 11:56:01 PM
re: BT Says US Carriers Full of Hot Air
I just passed some gas. I hope BT doesn't sue me !
grunt
50%
50%
grunt,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/4/2012 | 11:56:00 PM
re: BT Says US Carriers Full of Hot Air
well - I can think of a few ways.
1. they are quite possibly still doing it.
2. look at records and writen feild proceedures - as big carriers tend to do these things including training.
3. then the standard is people - some people dont lie under oath and under court order - so a few of the techs would answer yes to 'did you use such and such a method to install fiber.. etc.."
4. equipment to install it - did they buy it, do they cart it around, etc..

grunt
50%
50%
grunt,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/4/2012 | 11:56:00 PM
re: BT Says US Carriers Full of Hot Air
well - I can think of a few ways.
1. they are quite possibly still doing it.
2. look at records and writen feild proceedures - as big carriers tend to do these things including training.
3. then the standard is people - some people dont lie under oath and under court order - so a few of the techs would answer yes to 'did you use such and such a method to install fiber.. etc.."
4. equipment to install it - did they buy it, do they cart it around, etc..

farfields
50%
50%
farfields,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/4/2012 | 11:55:45 PM
re: BT Says US Carriers Full of Hot Air
...but not many others are. Who remembers last years litigation over BT 'inventing' hyperlinks? We can expect more of this from BT, as their patent dept. is run as a profit center. And I'll bet that all the readers of lightreading have a similar view of lawyers being able to understand technology, or make money from it.

This reminds me of a story a few years back that uncovered a British Rail patent for a 'nuclear powered flying saucer' that was granted during the 60s.

cheers
opticalweenie
50%
50%
opticalweenie,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/4/2012 | 11:55:41 PM
re: BT Says US Carriers Full of Hot Air
What, someone has a patent out on nuclear
powered flying saucers! Damn, I was almost
finished testing my prototype.

Weenie
farfields
50%
50%
farfields,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/4/2012 | 11:55:12 PM
re: BT Says US Carriers Full of Hot Air
and if you don't believe me, here's an extract.. (weblink is below). I know this is completely off-topic, but it is such fun.

According to the present invention there is provided a space vehicle including a platform, a thermonuclear fusion zone provided at the underside of said platform, means for supplying fusion material to said zone, one or more lasers to provide for ignition of said fusion material at said fusion zone, magnetic means on said platform adapted to deflect charged particles emitted from said fusion zone and a plurality of electrodes on said platform adapted to receive charged particles emitted from said fusion zone to thereby provide a source of electrical power.

http://www.quern.demon.co.uk/j...
Dr.Q
50%
50%
Dr.Q,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/4/2012 | 11:55:09 PM
re: BT Says US Carriers Full of Hot Air
Since we've diverged into weird patents, here's another one. Michael Jackson (the entertainer) holds a patent on an anti-gravity device. More specifically, the patent is titled "Method and means for creating anti-gravity illusion", and is US Patent 5,255,452, granted October 26, 1993.

[You can read more about this and other cutting edge inventions, at the US Patent and Trademark website, http://patft.uspto.gov.]

- Dr.Q


Page 1 / 2   >   >>
Flash Poll
From The Founder
It's clear to me that the communications industry is divided into two types of people, and only one is living in the real world.
LRTV Interviews
The New Wave of IP + Optical Integration

11|21|14   |   04:29   |   (7) comments


At the Alcatel-Lucent Technology Symposium, Heavy Reading senior analyst Sterling Perrin talks about how SDN has reshaped the discussion around packet and optical integration.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Huawei Highlights at BBWF 2014

11|20|14   |   3:40   |   (1) comment


Broadband World Forum is one of the world's largest telecoms, media and technology events with over 7,800 senior executives from across the globe converging on Amsterdam every year to identify the Next Big Thing. BBWF is an exciting place to meet the entire industry under one roof and identify the latest in network innovation, service optimization and customer ...
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
How Will BCMS Stimulate Margin for Broadband Operators?

11|19|14   |   6:52   |   (0) comments


In BBWF 2014, Liu Shuqing emphasizes the value of FMC 2.0 based full service experience by throwing light on the BCMS solution. The underlying principle of this innovative technique is to create network robustness and driving network from connection oriented to ACE – BAND oriented infrastructure, in which applications, cloud, and user experiences will be an asset ...
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
SingleFAN3.0: Better Connected Experience

11|19|14   |   3:06   |   (1) comment


At the BBWF 2014, David Hu, the VP of Huawei Access Network Product Line, talked about the future of access networks – SingleFAN3.0: faster broadband, wider coverage, and smarter connection.
LRTV Interviews
Basil Alwan Interview: The Road to Cloud

11|19|14   |   09:09   |   (0) comments


Alcatel-Lucent's head of IP and Transport talks about the migration towards a web-like networking environment, the impact of the cloud, SDN and NFV, and the yet-to-be-announced FP4 chip.
LRTV Documentaries
FairPoint Makes a Fair Point About Analytics

11|19|14   |   1:56   |   (1) comment


The US-based communication service provider gets to grips with advanced analytics, tackling data and breaking down the silos within its own business.
LRTV Documentaries
Analytics Lets C Spire Get to Know Subs

11|19|14   |   3:01   |   (2) comments


It's all about the data for US operator C Spire as it uses analytics to personalize its customer service down to individual subscribers.
LRTV Interviews
Nuage Branches Out With SDN: CEO Interview

11|17|14   |   9:32   |   (0) comments


Sunil Khandekar, CEO of Alcatel-Lucent's SDN-focused unit Nuage Networks, talks about the opportunities and challenges of breaking out of the data center into wide-area networks.
Light Reedy
Telecom Analytics Grows Up

11|14|14   |   1:15   |   (4) comments


The big data analytics debate has moved on from a year ago, with some experts suggesting it's no longer a technology challenge.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Huawei Compass

11|14|14   |   3:17   |   (1) comment


At OpenStack Summit 2014, Shuo Yang, Huawei Principal Cloud Infrastructure Architect introduced Huawei Compass, the software tool for solving customers' problems on the journey of OpenStack Cloud.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Huawei's Cloud Strategy in European Region

11|14|14   |   2:56   |   (1) comment


At OpenStack Summit 2014, Dr. Gotz, CTO of Huawei IT in European Region introduced Huawei's cloud strategy in European region.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Huawei's Contribution on OpenStack

11|14|14   |   5:58   |   (0) comments


At OpenStack Summit 2014, Dennis Gu, Huawei Chief Architect of Cloud Computing introduced the relationship between OpenStack and cloud computing, and Huawei's contribution on OpenStack.
Upcoming Live Events
December 2, 2014, New York City
December 3, 2014, New York City
December 8-10, 2014, Reykjavik, Iceland
February 12, 2015, Atlanta, GA
April 14, 2015, New York City, NY
May 6, 2015, McCormick Convention Center, Chicago, IL
May 13-14, 2015, The Westin Peachtree, Atlanta, GA
June 9-10, 2015, Chicago, IL
Infographics
Irish Telecom outlines the rise of VoIP technology, including its adoption within businesses and their perception of its quality.
Hot Topics
Bell Labs Chief Slams 'Toy' Networks
Robert Clark, 11/19/2014
$38.3M: Ain't That a Kik in the SMS
Sarah Reedy, Senior Editor, 11/20/2014
Do You Have a 2020 Vision?
Dennis Mendyk, Vice President of Research, Heavy Reading, 11/21/2014
The New Wave of IP + Optical Integration
Ray Le Maistre, Editor-in-chief, 11/21/2014
Google, AT&T, BT Unite on Network Data Models
Carol Wilson, Editor-at-large, 11/20/2014
Like Us on Facebook
Twitter Feed