Apple will no longer have to pay $625.6 million to VirnetX, which claimed the Cupertino company was infringing upon four Internet security-related patents. The decision came last Friday afternoon from U.S. District Judge Robert Schroeder in Tyler, Texas, claiming that it was "unfair" on Apple's part that two VirnetX lawsuits were aimed at the company in one trial (via Reuters).

The case with VirnetX began originally in 2010, with a jury eventually awarding the company $368 million in 2012, but that decision was thrown out in 2014 after the court found the verdict was "'tainted' by erroneous jury instructions in the case." VirnetX remained adamant and kept going after Apple, now amounting to the four total patents it believes Apple infringed upon, related to services like FaceTime and Messages.

virnetx
In the new ruling, Judge Shroeder claimed that jurors in the current case may have been unknowingly swayed and influenced by the events of the previous lawsuit, ultimately leading to an "unfair trial." As such, he has ordered that each case face a separate retrial, the first beginning next month on September 26. VirnetX CEO Kendall Larsen mentioned the company's disappointment at Shroeder's decision, but is preparing for the upcoming retrials all the same.

"We are disappointed," VirnetX Chief Executive Kendall Larsen said in a statement on Monday. "We are reviewing all our options and will follow the court's direction as we start preparing for these retrials."

In May, following its win in February, VirnetX continued to ask for more money from Apple, along with an injunction to block FaceTime and Messages while the case was happening. VirnetX is one of many companies described as a "patent troll" going after Apple in the court system by attesting that some of the company's most popular services and products were originated by someone else.

A Supreme Court ruling from earlier in the summer has made it easier for Apple -- and any company facing legal issues from such "patent assertion businesses" -- to challenge lawsuits like the one from VirnetX. Still, this one isn't over yet, since Apple will now have to face VirnetX again, twice, with the upcoming pair of separate retrials ordered by Judge Shroeder.

Top Rated Comments

FactVsOpinion Avatar
101 months ago
District Judge Robert Schroeder in Tyler, Texas, claiming that it was "unfair" on Apple's part that two VirnetX lawsuits were aimed at the company in one trial (via Reuters ('http://www.reuters.com/article/us-apple-virnetx-idUSKCN10C2IR')).
That seems to be written incorrectly.

If it is 'unfair on Apple's part' that means Apple acted unfairly rather than that Apple was acted unfairly upon.
Score: 6 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Rocketman Avatar
101 months ago
A patent troll is still a proper and legal patent owner, right?
Score: 2 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Zirel Avatar
101 months ago
A patent troll is still a proper and legal patent owner, right?
Having a patent doesn't automatically win cases.
Score: 2 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Popular Stories

iPhone 16 Camera Lozenge 2 Colors

iPhone 16 Plus Rumored to Come in These 7 Colors

Wednesday April 10, 2024 3:52 am PDT by
Apple's iPhone 16 Plus may come in seven colors that either build upon the existing five colors in the standard iPhone 15 lineup or recast them in a new finish, based on a new rumor out of China. According to the Weibo-based leaker Fixed focus digital, Apple's upcoming larger 6.7-inch iPhone 16 Plus model will come in the following colors, compared to the colors currently available for the...
iOS 18 Siri Integrated Feature

iOS 18 Will Add These New Features to Your iPhone

Friday April 12, 2024 11:11 am PDT by
iOS 18 is expected to be the "biggest" update in the iPhone's history. Below, we recap rumored features and changes for the iPhone. iOS 18 is rumored to include new generative AI features for Siri and many apps, and Apple plans to add RCS support to the Messages app for an improved texting experience between iPhones and Android devices. The update is also expected to introduce a more...
apple tv 4k yellow bg feature

When to Expect a New Apple TV to Launch

Tuesday April 9, 2024 8:30 am PDT by
It has been nearly a year and a half since the current Apple TV was released, so the device is becoming due for a hardware upgrade. Below, we recap rumors about the next Apple TV, including potential features and launch timing. The current model is the third-generation Apple TV 4K, announced in October 2022. Key new features compared to the previous model from 2021 include a faster A15...
apple silicon feature joeblue

Macs to Get AI-Focused M4 Chips Starting in Late 2024

Thursday April 11, 2024 10:10 am PDT by
Apple will begin updating its Mac lineup with M4 chips in late 2024, according to Bloomberg's Mark Gurman. The M4 chip will be focused on improving performance for artificial intelligence capabilities. Last year, Apple introduced the M3, M3 Pro, and M3 Max chips all at once in October, so it's possible we could see the M4 lineup come during the same time frame. Gurman says that the entire...
maxresdefault

Review: Six Months With the iPhone 15 Pro

Wednesday April 10, 2024 10:53 am PDT by
It's been a bit over six months since the iPhone 15 lineup came out in September, and MacRumors videographer Dan Barbera has been using an iPhone 15 Pro Max sans case since launch. Over on our YouTube channel, Dan did a long term review to demo how his phone has held up and his thoughts on the Action button, battery life, and camera features. Subscribe to the MacRumors YouTube channel for more ...