Bermuda Post

Tuesday, Sep 29, 2020

US Court rules Apple to pay $500 million for patent violations

US Court rules Apple to pay $500 million for patent violations

Apple must pay more than $ 500 million in damages and interest for infringing 4G patents owned by the PanOptis company, a Texas court ruled.
The US tech giant will appeal the decision made on Tuesday, according to local media.

PanOptis, which specializes in patent licensing, brought Apple to court in February last year, claiming that the company refused to pay for the use of 4G LTE technologies in its smartphones, tablets and watches.

The plaintiffs have repeatedly negotiated with Apple to reach an agreement for a FRAND license allowing the use of the plaintiffs' patent portfolios, which Apple is infringing, says a court document.

FRAND means that its terms are "fair, reasonable and non-discriminatory", the industry standard for the use of technologies.

Negotiations have not been successful because Apple refuses to pay a FRAND fee for the plaintiffs' license, the document continues.

Apple argued unsuccessfully that the patents were invalid, according to legal publications.

Lawsuits like this by companies that accumulate patents only to harass the industry, nothing else serves to stifle innovation and harm consumers, Apple said in a statement.

The case is one of many patent infringement lawsuits made by firms that specialize in licensing, that do not make any products but have rights to certain technologies.

The Texas court has already ruled twice against Apple, which it ordered to pay hundreds of millions of dollars to VirnetX - another company that specializes in patent litigation.

On its website, PanOptis offers to manage its clients' patents, allowing them to focus on “innovation and new developments”.
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