Seems like it’s been ages that we’ve been reporting on all the Apple vs. VirnetX court room drama, hasn’t it? Well, that’s more than likely because it has been a court saga years in the making — confounded all the more by the myriad of back-and-forth, trial and mistrial, tossed verdicts and appeals, galore. However, a new report from Reuters this week appears to suggest that the six-year-old patent infringement dispute may have just reached an ultimate resolution.
Handed down late last week by U.S. District Judge, Robert Schroeder, from the patent-holder friendly East Texas District Court, Apple was served a whopping $302.4 million penalty for allegedly infringing on VirnetX patents related to certain VoIP protocols.
If you’ve been following the ages-old Apple vs. VirnetX case as closely as we have, you’ll likely recall the iconic $625 million penalty that was handed down to Apple earlier this year — prior to the hefty verdict being tossed out by Judge Schroeder, due in part to the confusing nature of the many charges being lodged against Apple in the same case.
As a result of the original verdict being tossed, a series of retrials were scheduled for this fall, from which the ultimate $302.4 million verdict was reached. It’s also important to note, however, that Apple could ultimately be liable for a much heftier sum, if it’s somehow determined that the company willfully infringed VirnetX patents in a separate trial that is still forthcoming.
All things considered, VirnetX is a major, well-documented patent troll, holding no tangible product to back its name. The firm has a notoriety for leveling charges against big-name tech-titans, such as Apple and Microsoft, in a blatant attempt to cash in on its many patents. Back in 2010, for instance, right around the time that these original charges were brought against Apple, VirnetX was able to reach an out of court settlement with Microsoft totaling $223 million — $200 million of which came in 2010, and the remainder of which came in a subsequent case four years later.
We won’t know the total amount of monetary damages due to VirnetX until the second trial wraps up later on this year, however it looks like Apple is at least $302.4 million in the tank until further notice.
What do you think about the resolution of this iconic case?
Do you think Apple is guilty as charged?
Let us know in the comments!