A US district court has upheld the decision by a federal jury last year to award $368.2 million to Internet software and patent holding company VirnetX, after Apple infringed on a number of its patents related to virtual private networks (VPNs) used for FaceTime.
Noted by Seeking Alpha, Apple had submitted a post-trial motion to either reduce the damages or start a retrial, but this was denied by the US District Court for the Eastern District of Texas, Tyler Division. VirnetX had requested a permanent injunction against Apple, but this was also rejected by Judge Leonard Davis.
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He ruled that VirnetX will be awarded $330,211 each day until everything is settled in regards to royalties and the finer details are thrashed out between both companies. Apple will also pay $33,561 in daily interest up until the final judgment.
Seeking Alpha has reported that Apple and VirnetX have been ordered to meetup and agree a “royality” mediation settlement for any future use of the patents. If this does not happen though, VirnetX can file a new complaint, which could involve further damages.
VirnetX had originally claimed that Apple’s implementation of FaceTime, which allows iOS users to chat with one another face-to-face, violates Virtnet X’s existing IP.
A jury based in East Texas agreed with the complaints – which related to U.S. patent numbers 6,502,135, 7,418,504, 7,921,211 and 7,490,151. However, back in November VirnetX filed an additional complaint for the iPhone 5, the iPad mini and the latest iterations of the iPod touch and iPad – as well as Apple’s Mac range.
Apple isn’t going to stop offering FaceTime anytime soon, but it needs to broker a deal with VirnetX quickly if its to avoid any further payouts or court hearings.
It’s fair to say that the decision by Judge Leonard Davis was a victory for VirnetX, further cementing the decision last November.
VirnetX has plenty of experience when it comes to patent cases with large technology firms. It forced Microsoft to pay up to £200 million in May 2010 after breaking two patents related yet again to virtual private network technology – but this time used in the firm’s Windows and Office communication server products.
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