Mobai sued rivals for patent infringement and claimed compensation
As published by Beijing Intellectual Property Court, recently, the court accepted Beijing Mobai Technology Co., Ltd. v. Beijing Xiaoju Technology Co., Ltd. and Hangzhou Qingqi Technology Co., Ltd. for invention patent infringement disputes. The three companies currently have a dominant position in the bicycle-sharing market, and their main products are Mobike, Qingjubike and Bluegogo. The patent involved in the case is an invention patent titled "one lock", which was applied for on December 6, 2015, and was granted on September 11, 2018. Mobai stated that the two defendants used the patented horseshoe-shaped lock in the Qingjubike and Bluegogo bikes provided on the Didi app, and claimed compensation for infringement of 2 million yuan.
In the process of litigation, Mobai filed an application for evidence preservation, claiming that the infringing products locks and bicycles were under the management and control of the two defendants and were not sold publicly. Mobai could not obtain them objectively, and the remotely controlled locks accused of infringement may be quickly modified, so it requested the court to take evidence preservation measures to seal up and detain the shared bicycles infringed. After examination, the court found that the application for preservation was in conformity with the law. According to factors such as the value and operating conditions of shared bicycles, and possible operating losses caused by evidence preservation, the collegial panel has formulated a detailed pre-plan for preservation, and the case is under further trial at present.
Locks are the core components for shared bicycles. Mobai has invested a lot in the research and development of smart locks. From the information published by CNIPA, the company has filed 80 patent applications related to locks so far. An analysis article states that, the cost of a Mobike single smart lock is about 200 to 300 yuan, and the cost of a classic full bicycle is more than 3,000 yuan; whereas, the cost of a mechanical lock of Ofobike is less than 15 yuan. Nowadays, Ofobike is asked for refunds by its customers and almost disappears in the market.
In the market fight between Mobike and Ofobike, Ofobike has failed, but the competition in bicycle-sharing market is more and more intense. To some extent, the key to competition of an enterprise is the layout of intellectual property. Enterprises should combine the layout of intellectual property with the operation, and use intellectual property as a weapon to set barriers to competitors. After a scuffle of market and capital, bicycle-sharing enterprises have started the intellectual property war.