Ortovox has won an important patent case against the Barryvox Pulse concerning technology developed for the Ortovox S1 transceiver. The Ortovox patent covers the combination of magnetic compass signals with signals transmitted from an avalanche transceiver to give a 360° direction information even in situations where digital transceivers have difficulty in displaying a signal, for example during a pause in transmission or where signals overlap.
Changes in direction are updated in real time and the beacon will continue to give correct direction information even where the searcher is moving away from the victim.
It is a long running lawsuit. Mammut had prevailed in the first instance court. Mammut says that the two beacons were developed independently at roughly the same time and the infringement is coincidence rather than a deliberate act by Mammut to steal Ortovox technology.
The decision by the upper regional court in German leaves little room for Mammut to appeal. The case only covers the German patent. Ortovox intends to pursue Mammut in other European countries and North America where it also holds a similar patent but Mammut says that there are significant differences and believes that they do not infringe in those jurisdictions. The result is that Mammut has to remove all Barryvox Pulse transceivers from German retailers or update the software to disable the electronic compass. There will also be an issue of compensation for Pulse beacons already sold as well as legal costs.