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Apple Ordered to Pay VirnetX $502.6 Million USD in Patent Dispute

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A federal court in Texas has ordered Apple to pay $502.6 million USD to VirnetX Holding Corp over a patent dispute that has been reportedly going on for eight years.

Bloomberg reports that that the jury reported that found Apple to be infringing upon four patents related to secure communications. VirnetX claimed that features in Apple’s FaceTime, VPN on Demand, and iMessage infringes upon these patents.

The judgment marks the latest twist in an eight-year legal saga between Apple and the prolific patent troll, which employs just 21 people and primarily makes money by suing other companies for infringing on its portfolio of 185 patents.

In 2010, VirnetX’s lawyers sued Apple in a case that VirnetX ultimately won two years later, with a jury awarding the the company $368 million USD in damages. Apple appealed, and last year was ordered to pay $439.7 million USD.

This could be a short-lived victory for VirnetX, however. In 2016, the US Patent and Trademark Office‘s Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) invalidated four VirnetX patents in a related case, two of which were leveraged in the case decided this week.

VirnetX’s stock skyrocketed by 44 percent on Tuesday after the jury concluded Apple was violating its patents.

Kendall Larsen, CEO of VirnetX, said the damages, which were based on sales of more than 400 million Apple devices, were “fair.” “The evidence was clear,” Larsen said after the verdict was announced. “Tell the truth and you don’t have to worry about anything.”

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  • Rob Raymond

    I wish they would have reached an agreement. Facetime performance suffered when they had to switch to Akamai routing instead of the direct connections. I haven’t noticed it lately, so I wonder if they were able to find a workaround the VirnetX patents?

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