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You are here: MacNN Forums > News > Mac News > VirnetX asks court to block FaceTime and iMessage, raise Apple damages

VirnetX asks court to block FaceTime and iMessage, raise Apple damages
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MacNN Staff
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May 26, 2016, 02:11 PM
VirnetX has asked a Texas court to force Apple to stop offering its FaceTime and iMessage services to its users, following its legal victory against the computer producer earlier this year. At the same time, VirnetX is not happy with the $625 million verdict it has already got in terms of damages for Apple infringing on its patents in February, with it wanting the court to add at least $190 million on top of its existing reward.

In February, a court determined Apple was liable for infringing technology patented by VirnetX, in a retrial of a suit VirnetX had also won. Shortly after the verdict, Apple filed a motion calling for a mistrial, claiming VirnetX's lawyers argued outside the evidence and misrepresented the testimony of Apple's witnesses.

According to Law360, VirnetX told the court the injunction to block the popular video chat and messaging services, as well as a virtual private network (VPN) feature, may be harsh to consumers, it is needed because of the irreparable harm Apple's infringement caused the company. As for the $190 million addition to the jury's damages award, VirnetX believes Apple has become the "poster child" for unreasonable litigation tactics, with the extra money being a further punishment.

If VirnetX does succeed in gaining the injunction, this could lead to Apple disabling aspects of both iMessage and FaceTime, or even both services entirely, in order to comply with the order. It could also make the situation more expensive for Apple, forcing it to make a potentially costly agreement with VirnetX to keep the services running.
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May 26, 2016, 02:21 PM
I know you don't like quoting other websites but you left out some important information about the trial:

Apple is still seeking a mistrial for the earlier jury verdict. The company argues that an injunction or royalty payments would be inappropriate, given that the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office has rejected the four patents-in-suit. It also claims that that a questionable argument was made to the jury, and moreover that despite the jury's verdict, the court should rule non-infringement given a lack of evidence. (you did mention last portion)

Why is it that everyone else's patents are always legitimate while next to none of Apple's are considered legitimate by judges and juries? Everyone sues Apple yet when Apple tries suing someone, Apple almost always loses.
just a poster
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May 26, 2016, 02:35 PM
Dominant market positions are even more difficult to maintain that it is to obtain them.
Mike Wuerthele
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May 26, 2016, 02:58 PM
The USPTO action isn't complete, and won't be for a very long time -- probably two more years.

That's something the other sites forgot to mention. Until then, the patents are valid.
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May 26, 2016, 08:13 PM
To get an injunction, you have to show irreparable harm. Just because VirnetX says they will suffer irreparable harm is irrelevant. Since they don't actually do anything, there cannot be irreparable harm that money can't solve. Any injunction from E Texas would be immediately stayed by an Appellate Court that actually understands law.
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