Trinity Info Media, LLC v. Covalent, Inc., No. 22-1308 (Fed. Cir. 2023)Annotate this Case
Trinity sued Covalent for infringement of patent claims relating to methods and systems for connecting users based on their answers to polling questions. The Federal Circuit affirmed the dismissal of the suit, concluding that the asserted patents do not claim patentable subject matter under 35 U.S.C. 101. Because Trinity did not identify a proposed claim construction or specific facts to be discovered, the district court was not required to conduct claim construction and fact discovery before analyzing the asserted claims. The claims are directed to the abstract idea of matching based on questioning. A human mind could review people’s answers to questions and identify matches based on those answers; the patent’s requirements that the abstract idea be performed on a “hand-held device” or that matches are “reviewable by swiping” does not alter the conclusion that the focus of the asserted claims remains directed to an abstract idea, not an improvement on technology. The claims do not provide an inventive concept by virtue of their use of multiple processors, match servers, unique identifications, or a match aggregator.