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Apple Must Pay $532M to Smartflash for Patent Violation

Image courtesy of (Stuart Miles)/ FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Apple has been ordered to pay $532.9 million in fines for patent infringement of a Texas company’s software.

A federal jury ruled in favor of Smartflash late Tuesday, saying Apple used its patented technology in iTunes without permission.

The jury also rejected Apple’s contention that not only did it not use Smartflash technology, but that Smartflash’s patents were invalid.

Smartflash will receive more than $300 million less than the $852 million it was seeking. Apple, on the other hand, will have to dole out much, much more than the $4.5 million the Cupertino company said the allegedly violated patents were worth.

Apple, in a statement to Bloomberg, called Smartflash a patent troll.

“Smartflash makes no products, has no employees, creates no jobs, has no U.S. presence, and is exploiting our patent system to seek royalties for technology Apple invented,” Apple spokeswoman Kristin Huguet told the publication. “We refused to pay off this company for the ideas our employees spent years innovating and unfortunately we have been left with no choice but to take this fight up through the court system.”

The patents in question are related to digital rights management and inventions related to data storage and managing access through payment systems.

Smartflash, which launched the suit against Apple in May 2013, alleged the iPhone maker used the technology in apps available on iTunes such as Game Circus LLC’s Coin Dozer and 4 Pics 1 Movie.

Apple has vowed it will appeal the decision.

 

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Jennifer Cowan

Jennifer Cowan is the Managing Editor for SiteProNews.