“JLIP” is Jetlev’s intellectual property holding company. The company that holds the patents and things of value in case Jetlev goes bankrupt, making sure that the creditors don’t get anything of value. Common business tactic. JLIP is the company that, in the US, is currently suing Stratospheric for X-Jetpacks (we have yet to be formally notified so we don’t know all the details) and Jetaviation Inc for making the Jetovator. For the sake of clarity, we’ll just call them Jetlev, same owners, same lawyer, same style of doing business.
While we, Stratospheric have slapped Jetlev in the face by making a product that is superior to theirs while they are struggling to make even a working bolt-on jetpack, Stratospheric and Jetovator are just the legal warm up for Jetlev’s main event. The real target is Flyboard in the US because the money numbers are a hundred times larger. Jetlev started to sue the first Flyboard distributor and backed off at the time it was due to go to court. The reason? The fact that they took patent 7900867 back to the patent office and asked for a do-over is a big clue. Contrary to popular speculation, no deal was made between the parties and no judgement was made, it is all open and ready to go again. This is the reason for no direct imports of Flyboards into the US.
Right now the US Patent and Trademark Office, USPTO, is in the process of reviewing Jetlev’s attempted revision of the entire sport of hydro flight. A revision which Jetlev will attempt to own, dictate and run in their own style. This has a degree of legality in US patent rules. Frankie did it with his Flyboard patent by removing the requirement for the hand cane jets from his original patent and having it reissued. Jetlev has bolder ambitions. They are (attempting to) rewrite their jetpack patent into a super broad, “anything hydro” patent. For transparency the USPTO makes the internal re-exam process public. Although it is super weedy and obscure to look into, all of the documents and discussions are online at a system called the Public Pair.
The basics are this: after your patent has been issued, you go back to the patent office, and say “my bad, this is what I actually meant to say the first time”, and you rewrite your patent to fit what your competition is doing in the marketplace. You have to swear that you are not trying to add anything new, but it becomes a real word game. Patent holders try to make new definitions that will make their competitors “infringe”. The USPTO goes back and forth with them and they argue the new definitions.
You can read the proposals that Nick Lewis, Esquire, Jetlev’s in-house patent attorney is making to the patent office. Here is the document of their latest claims that they are attempting to sneak through in an attempt to own hydro sport.
This is one of our least favorite additions as it is such a craven grab:
26. The method according to claim 1, wherein the base unit is a vessel for transporting personnel.
Translation: Jetlev is trying to patent a person sitting on the jetski. So far the patent examiner appears to be calling BS on it, but they keep pushing.
This one is aimed straight at Jetovator, number 46:
A method of operating a personal propulsion device, comprising:
providing a personal propulsion device having a body unit with a thrust assembly including at least one nozzle; a delivery conduit in fluid communication with the thrust assembly; and a base unit in fluid communication with the delivery conduit; positioning the base unit in fluid communication with water; and
delivering pressurized water to the at least one nozzle such that the at least one nozzle discharges the pressurized water with sufficient thrust to directly lift the body unit and an operator into the air.
Because it is followed by number 47 and 48:
4 7. (Previously Presented) The method according to claim 46, wherein the base unit includes a seat to transport a person.
48. (Previously Presented) The method according to claim 46, further comprising transporting a person on the base unit.