Callpod, Inc. v. GN Netcom, Inc., No. 06 C 4961, Slip Op. (N.D. Ill. Mar. 6, 2009) (Kendall, J.).

Judge Kendall construed the disputed claim terms in plaintiff’s patent directed to methods and devices for making conference calls using cordless and mobile phones. The following constructions were of particular interest:

  • Plurality of participants” meant more than one participant. The parties agreed that plurality meant more than one in relation to headsets, but defendants argued that a plurality of participants was three or more because a conference call generally required more than two participants. The Court, however, noted that having two different definitions of plurality would lead to the odd result of requiring two headsets and three participants.
  • Callpod” was construed as a portable device that forms conference calls among a plurality of participants. The claims did not provide a clear definition, but the Court noted that the patentee’s lexicography governs and construed the term based upon the specification.