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Apple Loses Appeal in VirnetX Dispute, Could Owe Over $1.1 Billion

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Original poster
Apr 12, 2001
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13,194


Apple has not been successful in reducing the amount of money that it owes VirnetX in patent infringement fees, with the Cupertino company today losing an appeal that would have vacated or reduced a $502.8 million award.


According to Reuters, a federal judge today denied Apple's request for a new trial and claims that the award should not exceed $113.7 million.

Apple must pay the original $502.8 million that was awarded to VirnetX in October 2020, and combined with a prior $454 million award, the payments, future royalties, and interest could result in Apple paying VirnetX more than $1.1 billion.

Jurors in both of the lawsuits that VirnetX levied against Apple ruled in favor of VirnetX and said that Apple's FaceTime, iMessage, and VPN on Demand features had infringed on VirnetX patents related to communications security.

Going forward, Apple will need to pay 84 cents per iPhone or iPad for future infringements, which is more than Apple wanted to pay. Apple claimed future royalties should be zero or no more than 19 cents per unit.

The legal battle between the two companies has spanned more than 10 years, having first kicked off in 2010.

Article Link: Apple Loses Appeal in VirnetX Dispute, Could Owe Over $1.1 Billion
 

reznq

macrumors member
Jun 24, 2010
35
13
I don't care if they have to pay ten times what they owe -- can we PLEASE do whatever's required to restore peer-to-peer FaceTime? FaceTime has been downright terrible in limited bandwidth situations since the switch.

I agree that the patent in question is pathetic, but please!
 
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ArtOfWarfare

macrumors G3
Nov 26, 2007
9,065
4,999
Patent laws need to be heavily amended. No one should be pray to patent trolls.

I have some novel ideas for how fridges should work. I don't build fridges though. I have no intent to ever build a fridge. I don't want to build a multinational fridge-empire that takes on Samsung and LG and the rest.

I should be able to sell my ideas to those companies. Patents are how I can do it.

If I patent the idea and nobody does it for a few years, but then somebody picks it up, am I not entitled to something? You'd label me a patent troll, but it was my idea that I worked on for a few weeks. I'm the engineer who thought of it - I just didn't have the resources* at my disposal to bring it to market and distribute it worldwide at a cost customers would accept.

In software, this does seem a tad stupid, though. Scaling software is so trivial - who is capable of building worthwhile software but then finds that distributing it to customers is too daunting? Hardware is a totally different beast.
 
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zorinlynx

macrumors 603
May 31, 2007
6,408
10,188
Florida, USA
I have some novel ideas for how fridges should work. I don't build fridges though. I have no intent to ever build a fridge. I don't want to build a multinational fridge-empire that takes on Samsung and LG and the rest.

I should be able to sell my ideas to those companies. Patents are how I can do it.

If I patent the idea and nobody does it for a few years, but then somebody picks it up, am I not entitled to something? You'd label me a patent troll, but it was my idea that I worked on for a few weeks. I'm the engineer who thought of it - I just didn't have the resources* at my disposal to bring it to market and distribute it worldwide at a cost customers would accept.

In software, this does seem a tad stupid, though. Scaling software is so trivial - who is capable of building worthwhile software but then finds that distributing it to customers is too daunting? Hardware is a totally different beast.

The problem is these companies often patent concepts that are trivial or obvious to any first year software engineering student, then extort companies when they happen, by pure chance, to come up with the same idea on their own.

This isn't about some complex algorithm that took years to develop being stolen by Apple. This is just some NAT-hole punching for peer to peer VVoIP communication.

There's plenty of legitimate patents out there; this one was a pure scam though.
 
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JPack

macrumors 604
Mar 27, 2017
6,822
11,586
Perhaps you don't know that when companies lose lawsuits they aren't the ones paying the money. They all have blanket insurance called E&O's, Errors & Omissions. It covers them being sued.

As a result, those insurance premiums go up. Then Apple winks at consumers. We pay up.

There's no such thing as free lunch.
 
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jz0309

macrumors 65816
Sep 25, 2018
1,462
3,075
Temecula, CA
They are within the bounds of the current law, Apple violated their patent and has been suing to reduce the royalty fee and keeps on losing... it’s the cost of breaking the law, suck it up, like it or not.
Maybe instead I’d spending more money to fight this in the courts, go spend that money to work on changing the current law (related to patents) ... you’ll do yourself a favor in the long run...
 
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