Apple has been unsuccessful in reducing the amount of money it owes VirnetX in patent infringement fees, with the Cupertino tech giant losing an appeal that would have relinquished or reduced a $502.8 million award.
Apple vs. VirnetX has been a prolonged court battle that started in 2010 when the software company accused Apple’s FaceTime feature of infringing on its patents. There have been 2 cases of VirnetX that Apple had been fighting up until 2020.
Apple could owe $1.1 billion to VirnetX after judge denies new trial
As reported by Reuters, a federal judge recently denied Apple’s request for a new trial and claims that the award should not exceed $113.7 million. Apple must now pay the original $502.8 million that was awarded to VirnetX in October 2020, and combined with a previous $454 million award, the payments, royalties, and interest could add up to Apple paying more than $1.1 billion in awards.
Jurors in both of the lawsuits that VirnetX brought against Apple ruled in favor of the patent company and said that Apple’s FaceTime, iMessage, and VPN on Demand features had infringed on its 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 the tech giant wanted to pay. In an earlier court hearing, Apple claimed future royalties should be zero or no more than 19 cents per unit.
In 2016, a jury had initially ruled that Apple would need to pay $625 million, but the decision was later tossed out by Judge Schroeder. Judge Schroeder went on to order two retrials, stating that jurors in the damages retrial were likely confused by multiple references to the earlier cases.
Apple also made an attempt to get the U.S. Supreme Court to hear its appeal, but the Supreme Court declined to mediate in February 2020. The tech giant also claimed that many key parts of the patents concerned in this case were canceled by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office. The courts overturned that cancelation, ordering Apple to pay the damages.