Apple ordered to pay $19M for willful patent infringement

By on April 25, 2009, 4:57 PM
Filing a lawsuit against Apple in 2007, Opti Inc. accused the Cupertino-based company of willful infringement on a “predictive snooping” patent. The patent in question outlines a method of more efficiently delivering data among the CPU, memory and other devices. Acknowledging that a similar technology had been employed, Apple argued that the patent should be declared invalid due to prior art and also cited a Supreme Court ruling whereby obvious patents can be overturned should they fail a test of “obviousness”.

Unfortunately for Apple, the jury rejected their argument and found the company guilty of willful patent infringement, awarding Opti $19,009,728 as a reasonable royalty for infringement. While this is hardly a fatal blow in Apple’s pocket, having just reported their strongest non-holiday quarter in the company’s history, one must wonder why they’re so heavily targeted for patent infringement.

User Comments: 5

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Wendig0 said:
Not so fun when the finger is pointed at you, eh Apple? Alas, it's just pocket change I'm sure.
nunjabusiness said:
"one must wonder why they’re so heavily targeted for patent infringement"Ummm ... let's see.Because they are puffed-up self-important primadonnas who are usually on the other end of the lawsuit gun?
DarkCobra said:
So sad . . . too bad huh Apple!
JDoors said:
"... one must wonder why they’re so heavily targeted for patent infringement."Two reasons; They're a company trying to be profitable so they're inclined to believe their lawyers when told they don't need to pay for something ("Hey, we can do this for free? Let's do it!"), and BECAUSE they ARE making a profit, they're a natural target (the number of patent infringement lawsuits are often proportional to a company's profits: i.e., Microsoft).
anguis said:
While those could be the reasons, you do have to understand that some patents are for, well, obvious technology. It is a shame that patents reside on certain things, which just bottlenecks technology development.
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