2011 Nikon V Sigma Court Case

Started 7 months ago | Discussions thread
Laurence Matson
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Re: That would explain the increased prices and
In reply to Peter A. Stavrakoglou, 7 months ago

Peter A. Stavrakoglou wrote:

Laurence Matson wrote:

Tom Schum wrote:

Roger wrote:

Greetings

That would explain the increased prices for Sigma lenses and why we haven't seen a new SD body yet. Or not. With a lost of that much revenue it would give Sigma a reason to postpone or even drop the SD line all together?

Any way you look at it, it's a set back, if true.

Enjoy

Roger J.

I agree. We might not see a SD1Q for quite a while now, and I'm sure that would please our friends at N***n.

I doubt that this will be the case. This issue has been on the table for three years, and the development of the new dSLR started before that and certainly continued over that period when this case was still in court. And as Rick stated elsewhere, there are still two levels of appeal to go if Sigma were to decide.

In such cases, the money for a resolution is set aside starting at the very beginning. That is standard accounting practice.

What's possibly worse is that now Sigma has a strong incentive to remove the infringing technology from its product line. I worry that lenses with spectacularly effective image stabilization such as the 18-250mm F3.5-6.3 DC OS Macro HSM might become a thing of the past.

There were only six lenses with the technology challenged by Nikon. From the beginning, Sigma said that it was very, very difficult to get around all of the patents in this field. Canon have most of them, and in trying to dodge that bullet, they may have strayed into the other swamp.

I recall reading an article some time ago that suggested that stabilized lenses other than those made by Canon would have come on the market sooner if not for all the patents Canon holds.

I may have written that. I have gone into this mess a few times.

If you look back at the history of Sigma's OS systems, you will find at least three different iterations (actually 3 1/2 with the hybrid). In their efforts to make this work and also dodge the bullets, they actually came up with a better solution from their standpoint in the end.

Just a little history lesson. Before the release of the 80-400 OS, which was their first lens of this type, Michihiro-sama told me that he was having a lot of difficulty getting around the Canon patents. He was not sure they could do it.

Obviously, they felt they did, and since Canon did not file a suit as far as we know, they were likely successful. I am pretty sure that they had also avoided the Nikon patents. And iirc, there was an "arrangement" the details of which were never made public.

My impression was that lens business was always more secret than camera stuff, and this probably had to do with the original work and work environment, on the one hand, and the longer and greater competition experienced. When Dominic and I visited the factory and offices, all monitors were turned away from us.

It may have been the second effort that caused the problems - in more ways than one. These were the 150-500 OS group. This was likely the "conflicted" OS lenses. There was an abrupt switch away from that technology.

The third group is the current crop. As I said, this long road may have actually been good with much improved OS at the end. I have no idea how the Sigma solution compares with other manufacturers though.

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Laurence
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Laurence
laurence at appledore-farm dot com
"I thought: I read something in a book, I dream, I imagine, and it comes true. And it is exactly like this in life.
"You can dream, and it comes true, as long as you can get out of the certitudes. As long as you can get a pioneering spirit, as long as you can explore, as long as you can think off the grid. So much time we spend in our education, in our lives is spent learning certitudes, learning habits, trying to fight against the unknown, to avoid the doubts and question marks. As soon as you start to love the unknown, to love the doubts, to love the question marks, life becomes an absolutely fabulous adventure."
Bertrand Piccard, a Swiss person
http://www.pbase.com/lmatson
http://www.pbase.com/sigmadslr
http://www.howardmyerslaw.com

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