Apple to pay $439.7 million for infringing VirnetXs' patented technologies
17 October 2017
Apple will have to pay $439.7 million to the patent-holding firm VirnetX for infringing on four patented technologies that were apparently used in FaceTime and other iOS apps.
While the US District Court has pronounced the final judgment, where the case is being argued, Apple told The Verge that it plans to appeal the ruling. The patent battle started in 2012.
VirnetX, which first filed suit against Apple in 2010, won $368 million just two years later and then sued again in 2012, which is the suit on which the ruling came yesterday.
Apple, which initially lost the suit, filed for a mistrial. It went on to win and lose the trial and was asked to pay around $300 million. After losing some more, it is now having the amount increased even further after a judge found Apple guilty of willful infringement, enhancing the payment amount from $1.20 per infringing Apple device to $1.80 per device. The infringing devices include certain iPhones, iPads, and Macs. VirnetX has termed the ruling ''very reasonable.''
According to commentators, it is more about the principle rather than the money for Apple. VirnetX, a patent troll makes money from licensing patents and suing other parties. ''Our portfolio of intellectual property is the foundation of our business model,'' its states in its SEC filing.
"This final judgment amount is large because sales of Apple's infringing products are large. The cost of our security technology in infringing devices has been apportioned and is less than a quarter of one per cent of the device's cost," VirnetX CEO Kendall Larsen said, www.theregister.co.uk reported.
"We believe this established per device rate for security is very reasonable and will greatly assist us with our domestic and global licensing efforts."
Meanwhile, in addition to the appeal against the ruling, Apple also has been able to persuade the US Patent and Trademark Office to invalidate VirnetX's patents.
In case VirnetX's appeals in that patent office case fail, the patents would be rendered useless for litigation, according to commentators.