Smarter Agent filing another round of lawsuits
Smarter Agent was named a “Genius 30” game changer last year for their power grab like none seen before as they plow through the real estate industry, suing company after company for their ownership of the patent for “global positioning-based real estate database access device and method,” “position based information access device and method” and “position based information access device and method of searching.”
In summary, the lawsuits allege that no one but Smarter Agent can create a mobile app in which real estate is searched- not IDX, not third party sites, not agents, not brokers, and when a company does, they protect their patent by suing for injunctive relief and monetary damages. Despite being New Jersey based, the company has again filed suit in Delaware which is notorious for being lenient on companies pursuing patent infringement cases.
In 2010, they sued Zillow, Hotpads, Boopsie, Move Inc., Trulia, ZipRealty and others.
Today, Smarter Agent has filed suit against MobileRealtyApps.com (StreetEasy), Goomzee, Kurio, Diverse Solutions, Market Leader, Hillside Software, ForSaleByOwner.com, and Terrostar Technology Solutions for their alleged patent infringement and they are asking for injunctive relief and monetary damages.
We’ve opined in the past that patents are worth protecting, but that some patents (potentially this one) impede technological and business progress and ultimately penalize the real estate professional end user whose pocket ends up emptier as they pay the penalty, and their offering for clients ends up lighter.