RED Digital Camera‘s lawsuit claiming that Nikon infringed on its patent was dismissed by the US District Court today. We covered previously how their patents on compressed RAW formats have affected the camera industry, and how previous lawsuits filed by RED have come as a result of these patents, but Nikon decided to fight their lawsuit.
Today, the US District Court Central District of California threw out RED’s claim that the compressed RAW format in Nikon’s Z9 digital camera was a violation of its patent.
The lawsuit was filed in May of last year, when Nikon updated the Z9’s firmware, allowing for lossless compression. Nikon however fired back at the validity of the patents filed by RED, with the claim that such patents are not viable to even be filed, claiming that RED did not “satisfy the conditions of patentability.”
However, on April 27th, 2023, RED and Nikon both agreed to what is called a ‘Rule 41 Dismissal.’ This means that RED and Nikon agreed to the dismissal, however, if theres some sort of reason for the suit to be brought back, it is possible. Theres a few possibilities as to why a Rule 41 Dismissal was issued, and it could imply that Nikon paid for the ability to use compressed lossless RAW in their cameras. However, it is also probably likely that RED realized they could lose the lawsuit, or the suit could have been dragged on, resulting in losses due to legal fees and challenges. The public rarely will know about the reasons for a Rule 41 Dismissal, but because this was not a straightforward win for RED, this is potentially a positive turn for other camera makers looking to utilize compressed RAW in their cameras.
What do you think will happen as a result of this dismissal? Will other camera companies begin using their own compressed RAW formats in their cameras, as a challenge to RED? What’s next for RED and their patents? Let us know on Twitter!