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Ink and toner form the foundation of a $100 billion industry. Without the profits from cartridges, printers would be much more expensive. However, the high-profit potential on replacement cartridges attracts competitors and brings an OEM Toner Vs Compatible Toner threat to market share into play.
As US ITC 337-TA-1106 gets underway, the International Trade Commission is likely to be the most qualified and efficient forum for litigating the dispute between Canon and nearly 50 manufacturers, importers, distributors, and resellers of allegedly infringing generic printer cartridges.
The third-round of litigation commenced in the U.S. International Trade Commission as 337-TA-1106 was accepted and formally instituted for investigation on March 27, 2018. The generic cartridges ITC timeline is swift and may quickly impact market share prospects for new-build cartridges.
With 50% more named respondents in the latest (337-TA-1106) ITC Canon cartridge patent dispute investigation than there were in the 2014 (337-TA-891) investigation, Canon is stepping up its efforts to eliminate products it believes to be infringing its patents, from the U.S. marketplace.
Without the profits from the cartridges over the printer's lifetime, there would be no new printers so it shouldn't be surprising that patents come into play to help protect market share. However, it's not a risk-free strategy and Canon may be set for a resounding loss in the current ITC Investigation.

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