Apple Pays $25 Million in Settlement Over Cover Flow, Time Machine Patents

Apple will pay $25 million to settle a patent lawsuit with Network-1 Technologies' subsidiary Mirror World Technologies and license its patents, the companies announced today. The patent (No. 6,006,227) dates back to 1999, covering a system that stores documents in a stream ordered chronologically, similar to Apple's Cover Flow or Time Machine.

timemachine

Under the terms of the agreement, Apple will receive a fully paid up non-exclusive license to the '227 Patent for its full term, which expired in 2016, along with certain rights to other patents in Network-1's portfolio. Network-1 will receive $25 million from Apple for the settlement and fully paid up license.

The technologies described in the patent were developed from the work of Yale University computer scientist Professor David Gelernter and his then-graduate student Dr. Eric Freeman in 1996. They then founded Mirror Worlds LLC, which began a long-running legal fight with Apple over the patent. In 2010, Apple was hit with a $625 million judgment over the patent. A year later, Apple won a reversal of the decision and the judge closed the case in Apple's favor.

In 2013, Mirror Worlds was purchased by Network-1 and the company acquired Mirror World's patents. Network-1 describes itself as a company "engaged in the development, licensing and protection of its intellectual property and proprietary technologies." Last year, the company also reached a settlement with Microsoft for $4.6 million over the same patent.

Top Rated Comments

997941 Avatar
77 months ago
Maybe not trolls, but patent hoarders, and the only way they make money is by suing others.

Not saying they aren't justified since they own the patent. It's just a slimy business model.
Unless apple does it. Then its called protectiong intellectual property :)
Score: 35 Votes (Like | Disagree)
DocPenguin Avatar
77 months ago
You have violated my patent for a vessel that will hold a fluid substance containing molecules consisting of two hydrogen atoms and one oxygen atom. This vessel may be held to a users face at an angle from 280 degrees to 350 degrees causing the fluid to flow from the vessel into the user's mouth. This all to aid in the act of hydrating the user. Alternatively, other fluid substances beyond that which is mentioned above may also be contained and transferred within the aforementioned vessel.
Score: 28 Votes (Like | Disagree)
fastasleep Avatar
77 months ago
Seems like Apple has been busy copying rather than inventing or being creative these days. Sad isn't it?
Sure, if it were true.
Score: 24 Votes (Like | Disagree)
xkmxkmxlmx Avatar
77 months ago
25 mil? That's like 5 million for each person that actually used cover flow more than once.
Score: 12 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Cartoonkid Avatar
77 months ago
Unless apple does it. Then its called protectiong intellectual property :)
Except that Apple actually MAKES things protected by the patents they own, whereas, "Network-1 describes itself as a company 'engaged in the development, licensing and protection of its intellectual property and proprietary technologies.'"

Or in other words, they don't make a damn thing.

Granted, not every patent Apple has is for something they've brought to market, but if they stopped making iDevices and just sued companies that infringed their patents, I'd say the same thing about them.
[doublepost=1468024654][/doublepost]
It seems like they were academic computer scientists coming up with innovative ideas. Not exactly my image of a patent troll but who knows.
[doublepost=1468023764][/doublepost]For those wondering Mirror Worlds LLC's compensation was

"The consideration paid by Network-1 to Mirror Worlds, LLC for the Patent Portfolio consisted of (i) $3,000,000 in cash, (ii) 5-year warrants to purchase 875,000 shares of common stock of Network-1 at $1.40 per share, and (iii) 5-year warrants to purchase 875,000 shares of Network-1 at $2.10 per share.

Recognition also received from Network-1 an interest in the net proceeds realized from the monetization of the Patent Portfolio as follows: (i) 10% of the first $125 million of net proceeds, (ii) 15% of the next $125 million of net proceeds, (iii) and 20% of any portion of the net proceeds in excess of $250 million."

So they got $3 million up front, plus they'll get $2.5 million (10%) from this lawsuit + licensing.
The original developers of the patent were academic computer scientists. Network-1 is anything but that.
Score: 11 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Smith288 Avatar
77 months ago
So if I came up with a great idea but not enough capital to develop it, I shouldn't be able to "hoard" that intellectual property? Really? Companies should be able to come and take it without licensing it? Because, Apple? Please.
Score: 10 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Popular Stories

iPhone 14 Pro Purple Front and Back MacRumors Exclusive

iPhone 14 Pro Renders Highlight Multiple Design Changes

Wednesday May 25, 2022 8:56 am PDT by
Leaker Jon Prosser today shared ostensibly accurate renders of the iPhone 14 Pro, providing the most accurate look yet at what the device could look like when it launches later this year. In the latest video on YouTube channel Front Page Tech, Prosser revealed renders of the iPhone 14 Pro made by Apple concept graphic designer Ian Zelbo, highlighting a range of specific design changes...
apple account card

Wallet App Now Supports Apple Account Cards on iOS 15.5

Wednesday May 25, 2022 5:01 pm PDT by
Apple appears to have recently updated the Wallet app to allow users to add an Apple Account Card, which displays the Apple credit balance associated with an Apple ID. If you receive an App Store or Apple Store gift card, for example, it is added to an Apple Account that was previously visible in the App Store and Apple Store apps. As of today, the Apple Account balance can also be added to...
iphone 13 pro max display bleen

iPhone 14 Max Reportedly Weeks Behind Schedule [Updated]

Thursday May 26, 2022 7:25 am PDT by
The iPhone 14 Max is currently behind schedule by around three weeks, according to Haitong International Securities analyst Jeff Pu. Yesterday, Nikkei Asia reported that at least one iPhone 14 model was three weeks behind schedule due to the impact of lockdowns on Apple's supply chains in China, but it was not clear which iPhone 14 model this related to. Now, Pu has clarified that the model...
iPad Pro USB C Feature Coral

Deals: Apple's iPad Pro Reaches Up to $449 Off in Amazon's Latest Sales

Wednesday May 25, 2022 10:09 am PDT by
Amazon is marking down a wide variety of 11-inch and 12.9-inch iPad Pro models this week, with prices starting as low as $749.00 for the 11-inch tablet. You'll find the full list of sales below, all of which can be found on Amazon. Note: MacRumors is an affiliate partner with some of these vendors. When you click a link and make a purchase, we may receive a small payment, which helps us keep...
iOS 16 mock for feature wishlist

iOS 16 Wishlist: Features MacRumors Readers Want to See in the Next Version of iOS

Friday May 27, 2022 2:15 pm PDT by
There's just over a week to go until the 2022 Worldwide Developers Conference, which is one of the biggest Apple events of the year. We've heard surprisingly little about iOS 16 this year, so we're in for some major surprises when June 6 rolls around. As we wait for the keynote event, we thought we'd share some iOS 16 wishlist items from MacRumors readers, because who knows? We just might...
top stories 28may2022

Top Stories: WWDC 2022 Schedule, New Apple Watch Pride Bands, and More

Saturday May 28, 2022 6:00 am PDT by
It's Memorial Day weekend in the United States, and that means WWDC is right around the corner and anticipation is building for what we might see at the opening keynote. Software updates are a given, but will we see any new hardware? Other news this week included the annual release of new Pride-themed Apple Watch bands, iPhone 14 Pro rumors, and Sony's latest headphones that compete against...
a16 5nm m2 3nm feature 2

Alleged Apple Chip Plans Suggest 'A16' Will Stick With 5nm, 'M2' to Make Jump to 3nm Instead

Friday May 27, 2022 6:54 am PDT by
The "A16" chip for the iPhone will reportedly be manufactured with the same process as the iPhone 13's A15 Bionic, with Apple saving a bigger performance leap for the "M2" chip designed for its next-generation Macs. Meanwhile, the company is working on a "final" M1 chip variant that uses more powerful cores from the A15, according to the leaker known as "ShrimpApplePro." In a thread on...