TRADING TECHNOLOGIES INT’L v. IBG LLC, decided April 18, 2019, Statutory Subject Matter

U.S. Patent Nos. 7,533,056, 7,212,999, and 7,904,374 are directed to graphical user interfaces (UI) for electronic trading (pages 3-4). The following generalizes between various of the patents. The patents are not directed to a technological invention, so were properly subjected to covered business method (CBM) review (pages 4-13).  The invention is the display of information to make the trader faster, not the computer faster (page 9). For statutory subject matter, the claims are directed to graphing or displaying bids and offers to assist a trader to make an order (page 14). This receipt and display of information is abstract (page 14). The added GUI particular to how to order does not change the abstract nature (pages 14-15). For step two, the receipt and display are routine data gathering and routine display (page 16). Display of information at particular locations or in particular ways is not enough to make the claims patent eligible (page 17).

Hindsight: Even though Trading Technologies had other GUI patents upheld as directed to patent eligible subject matter in a non-precedential opinion, GUI-based patents may continue to be difficult or risky under patent eligibility. Any focus in the claims on how the GUI is generated rather than the end result GUI, on how the computer is improved, and/or novelty in the actual GUI outside the application context with a corresponding benefit outside that context may help.