VirnetX tells jury Apple should pay $532M over patent infringement
Jan 28, 2016 10:19 PM EST
Patent holding firm VirnetX argued in Texas Court on Monday that Apple should pay $532 million for allegedly using patented technology for secure communications. The sum is nearly 45 percent higher than the initial damages award vacated last year.
In a jury trial that began on Monday in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Texas, VirnetX said that Apple's VPN technology, as well as its FaceTime video-messaging, both infringe the company's patents.
According to Bloomberg, the case is a retrial on patent infringement issue plus some newer generations of Apple products. VirnetX had previously won $368.2 million verdict against Apple. But the original ruling was thrown out by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit.
The appeals court decision gave VirnetX the chance to update its claims to include Apple's newer devices like the iPad Air, iPad mini with Retina display, iPhone 5s, iPhone 5c, iPod Touch with Retina display and various Mac computers, according to Apple Insider.
VirnetX lawyer Brad Caldwell of Caldwell Cassidy told jury that Apple has not played fair. Caldwell said that Apple has taken VirnetX's intellectual property without permission.
Apple's lawyer Greg Arovas of Kirkland & Ellis said that Apple believes in fairness and protecting intellectual property. "VirnetX keeps moving the boundary, asking for more and more and more," added Arovas.
VirnetX patent suit that was originally filed in 2012 is already estimated to have cost Apple millions of dollars. The lawsuit forced Apple to modifiy FaceTime, the iMessage system to send messages to other Apple users and its newer operating systems, to avoid further infringement. The modification thought to cost Apple $2.4 million per month. However, VirnetX argues Apple's modifications did not skirt its IP.
The trial is expected to last through next week and will continue to see arguments from both sides. The trial will focus on whether Apple is using the technology through FaceTime. Apple's VPN on Demand service was already found to infringe VirnetX patents.
VirnetX patent case is not the first patent infringement suit for Apple. According to 9 to 5 Mac, Apple was ordered to pay $532.9 million last year for infringing on gaming patents of SmartFlash LLC. Apple said that it is the subject of more patent-related lawsuits than any other company.
VirnetX has had some big wins in patent infringement case in the recent years. In 2010, VirnetX patent assault on Microsoft ended with a $200 million settlement. In December 2015, Microsoft paid up again, making a payment of $23 million to end claims that its Skype Internet telephone infringed VirnetX patents.