Apple on hook for $308.5M in DRM patent suit

Posted:
in General Discussion edited March 19
A federal jury in Texas on Friday decided Apple owes $308.5 million in royalties to Personalized Media Communications for infringing a digital rights management patent.

Gavel


Following deliberations, a jury in the patent holder-friendly Marshall, Texas, district found Apple technology, including FairPlay, in infringement of a patent held by non-practicing entity Personalized Media, reports Bloomberg. FairPlay is used to distribute encrypted content on iTunes, the App Store and Apple Music.

Personalized Media first sued Apple in 2015, but the case took years to make its way to trial. Apple successfully challenged the patent-in-suit with an appeal to the U.S. Patent Trial and Appeal Board, which subsequently invalidated certain claims of the IP. That ruling was ultimately reversed by an appeals court in 2020, sending the case to trial.

According to the report, an expert called by Personalized Media calculated Apple's owed royalties to be $240 million, but jurors decided to apply a running royalty rate that
ran the figure up to $308.5 million. Running royalties are typically calculated with a basis in unit sales or service engagement.

Apple in a statement said it was disappointed in the ruling and intends to appeal.

"Cases like this, brought by companies that don't make or sell any products, stifle innovation and ultimately harm consumers," the company said.

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 19
    leighrleighr Posts: 219member
    In these cases, where “companies” have simply bought a patent that is similar to an industry-wide practice, the payout figure needs to be somehow based on a percentage of the infringed companies’ own production numbers vs the infringing company. So that a company that makes zero products themselves have essentially a zero dollar claim, but a company that has a $5M turnover, which could be shown to have been $50M, had the IP not been copied, are compensated appropriately. This would, as Apple states, stop these ridiculous non-practicing entities from making ludicrous claims. 
    tokyojimuFileMakerFellerbaconstangEsquireCatsmacwiz44sdw2001watto_cobra
  • Reply 2 of 19
    Huh. Texas again.

    Between don't with my internal policies Texas trying to get elections overturned in other states (which had already gone through two or three recounts), their reluctance to hook up with national power grids and their failure to winterize their power production facilities (it don't get that cold that often), and their reluctance to implement any infection control protocols one wonders what will next be coming from that state.

    Certainly it's the home turf of the patent troll courts - and every time I see them mentioned in the news it just seems like the state is just stuffed full of fatheads.

    Methinks if Texans want to regain the respect of the nation the first step they must take is to vote out the riff-raff they have running the state and elect some decent non-Trumpian reality-based local government - then again, maybe there's a reason that the state is run by such a pathetic collection of bozos.
    viclauyycmacwiz44muthuk_vanalingambadmonkStrangeDayswatto_cobra
  • Reply 3 of 19
    gatorguygatorguy Posts: 23,245member
    Huh. Texas again.

    Between don't with my internal policies Texas trying to get elections overturned in other states (which had already gone through two or three recounts), their reluctance to hook up with national power grids and their failure to winterize their power production facilities (it don't get that cold that often), and their reluctance to implement any infection control protocols one wonders what will next be coming from that state.

    Certainly it's the home turf of the patent troll courts - and every time I see them mentioned in the news it just seems like the state is just stuffed full of fatheads.

    Methinks if Texans want to regain the respect of the nation the first step they must take is to vote out the riff-raff they have running the state and elect some decent non-Trumpian reality-based local government - then again, maybe there's a reason that the state is run by such a pathetic collection of bozos.
    Those patent courts are Federal and not state. If you voted all the Texas rascals out it wouldn't affect the rulings such as this one from Federal District courts there. 

    By the way, Personalized Media also sued Google using the same patents and in Texas patent courts in front of Texas jurors, so Apple wasn't singled out. Noteworthy is that Google won their case. Perhaps Apple's arguments were different and not as effective/pertinent.
    https://ncjolt.org/blogs/google-wins-infringement-case-at-trial-over-video-streaming-patent-covering-1980s-inventions/
    edited March 20 macwiz44badmonk
  • Reply 4 of 19
    EsquireCatsEsquireCats Posts: 1,197member
    Texan jurors doing what they need to do to keep their little pot of gold running...

    Patent reform in the country is well overdue. It’s unfair to claim damages when neither producing a product, nor even possessing the ability to produce such a product due to having insufficient complementary IP or technical know-how. What damage has truly been done?

    What we have right now is just a silly trap for anyone who does create products. It needlessly elevates the cost to consumers while providing no alternative options in the market place.
    The other side issue: it effectively funnels money from a large number of consumers into an entity which contributes nothing to society. Because these suits happen retrospectively those consumers were additionally denied a choice in who they spent their money with.
    macwiz44watto_cobra
  • Reply 5 of 19
    gatorguygatorguy Posts: 23,245member
    Texan jurors doing what they need to do to keep their little pot of gold running...
    Gosh, the $50 a day the Texax jurors get must be building up quite the nest-egg for them. 

    As for patent reform, an inventor will always be allowed to monetize his invention. Otherwise, why have patents at all? Are you advocating that only the more wealthy who can afford to actually build a product using them should be allowed to have one? The guy in his garage who comes up with that unique thing but has no funds to build a factory can't protect what he's invented, if nothing else sell his idea to someone who can afford to put it to use? Should that be allowed?

    BTW, wealthy techs such as Apple file a whole lotta patents to protect "inventions" they have no plans of using in a shipping product. What it does accomplish is blocking some other person or company from creating a products that can be deemed to read on the claims of an "Apple invention" and compete with them in at least some minor way. That stifles innovation rather than encourages it. Should that be allowed?

    You might forget that Apple themselves sued Samsung in a billion dollar trial using in part patent claims they themselves did not use for an actual Apple product. That sounds like a non-practicing entity, someone not building a product using a patent claim they sue someone else over. Should that have been allowed?
     
    Anyway, a short article about those Texas patent courts:
    https://www.thompsoncoburn.com/insights/publications/item/2021-03-10/a-race-between-west-texas-and-delaware-for-the-patent-venue-of-choice
    edited March 20 macwiz44muthuk_vanalingam
  • Reply 6 of 19
    gatorguy said:
    Huh. Texas again.

    Between don't with my internal policies Texas trying to get elections overturned in other states (which had already gone through two or three recounts), their reluctance to hook up with national power grids and their failure to winterize their power production facilities (it don't get that cold that often), and their reluctance to implement any infection control protocols one wonders what will next be coming from that state.

    Certainly it's the home turf of the patent troll courts - and every time I see them mentioned in the news it just seems like the state is just stuffed full of fatheads.

    Methinks if Texans want to regain the respect of the nation the first step they must take is to vote out the riff-raff they have running the state and elect some decent non-Trumpian reality-based local government - then again, maybe there's a reason that the state is run by such a pathetic collection of bozos.
    Those patent courts are Federal and not state. If you voted all the Texas rascals out it wouldn't affect the rulings such as this one from Federal District courts there. 
    It would if Texas left the Union. There are a lot of people there that would like nothing more than to break away from the US as a whole.
    That's one way of getting Cancun Cruz out of DC I suppose. :)

    watto_cobra
  • Reply 7 of 19
    gatorguygatorguy Posts: 23,245member
    leighr said:
    In these cases, where “companies” have simply bought a patent that is similar to an industry-wide practice, the payout figure needs to be somehow based on a percentage of the infringed companies’ own production numbers vs the infringing company. So that a company that makes zero products themselves have essentially a zero dollar claim, but a company that has a $5M turnover, which could be shown to have been $50M, had the IP not been copied, are compensated appropriately. This would, as Apple states, stop these ridiculous non-practicing entities from making ludicrous claims. 
    So Apple should not have been allowed to sue Samsung for money over patent claims they themselves did not practice, aka acting as a non-practicing entity? Even Apple admitted they did not actually use 3 of the 5 patent claims they were asserting, yet wanted millions for infringement. 
    edited March 20 muthuk_vanalingam
  • Reply 8 of 19
    The reality is we need massive patent reform. 

    - Ideas should not be allowed to be patented. We all have ideas. Think about the patent on the concept of the online “shopping cart”. So now developers have to use another name for a common practice. 
    - Parents were great in the world of physical goods. You couldn’t patent the idea of a “tire as being round “, but you could patent your design with a certain rubber compound, tread pattern and how the tire was made with steel strands. But that needs to be specific so as not to be overly broad. Should I be able to cancel out all future tire development because I could just say steel bands without specify if they were twisted or straight, etc. 
    - Software needs to be the same. Allow protection for your design with a relational database with these tables designed this way and the other code specified. What would happen if you gave a “build a shopping cart app” in a computer science class? Would you argue that someone could get a generic patent that covers all variations of design and that this simple concept could never be developed independent of knowledge of the original IP. 
    - The concepts some of these patents are being showed on are so basic and generic that it truly does stifle innovation. 
    StrangeDayswatto_cobra
  • Reply 9 of 19
    gatorguygatorguy Posts: 23,245member
    macwiz44 said:
    The reality is we need massive patent reform. 

    - Ideas should not be allowed to be patented. 
    They aren't. 
    https://www.ipwatchdog.com/2018/11/17/protecting-idea-can-ideas-be-patented/
    "The moral of the story is that mere ideas cannot be protected, so inventors need to think in terms of an invention.  Inventions can be patented. Ideas cannot be patented."
    edited March 20
  • Reply 10 of 19
    jrg_ukjrg_uk Posts: 52member
    I just want to know what was it about FairPlay, introduced when the iTunes music store began in 2003 or so, that took them until 2015 to decide to sue for patent violation?

    Or is it another of the bogus patents that espouses an idea wrapped up in impressive sounding patent lingo, rather than any genuine technique for implementing it?
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 11 of 19
    sdw2001sdw2001 Posts: 17,715member
    Huh. Texas again.

    Between don't with my internal policies Texas trying to get elections overturned in other states (which had already gone through two or three recounts), their reluctance to hook up with national power grids and their failure to winterize their power production facilities (it don't get that cold that often), and their reluctance to implement any infection control protocols one wonders what will next be coming from that state.

    Certainly it's the home turf of the patent troll courts - and every time I see them mentioned in the news it just seems like the state is just stuffed full of fatheads.

    Methinks if Texans want to regain the respect of the nation the first step they must take is to vote out the riff-raff they have running the state and elect some decent non-Trumpian reality-based local government - then again, maybe there's a reason that the state is run by such a pathetic collection of bozos.
    Good Lord.   Texas tried to have the election overturned in other states because those states violated the Constitution when they made changes to their laws with respect to the election.  They didn’t go through the legislature, which ended up disenfranchising voters in Texas and OTHER states.  The Court not hearing it doesn’t mean it had no merit.  

    The way it is now, a company has to have a presence inside a given district to file in the district. That’s why the Western District is so active now. It used to be the Eastern District. It has nothing to do with the elected officials.  

    Why would Texas winterize a power grid when they almost never gets such weather? The insulated nature of the system is not the issue.  The failure of renewables is. They require more of a traditionally generated base load because they are inconsistent.  The push for renewables caused it.  Not natural gas or coal.  

    Texas’s “Trumpian riff raff” has done a great job.  That’s why people are flocking from disaster blue states like CA and NY. Texas is a growing state with a much better business environment.  So is Florida.  Gee, I wonder what they have in common?  
    JanNL
  • Reply 12 of 19
    davendaven Posts: 626member
    Like I wrote a couple of days ago.... I think I'm going to patent the idea of being a non-practicing entity suing for infringement of obvious patented ideas that shouldn't have been allowed patents in the first place and then go after non-practicing entities suing for infringement of obvious patented ideas that shouldn't have been allowed patents in the first place.
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 13 of 19
    sdw2001 said:
    Good Lord.   Texas tried to have the election overturned in other states because those states violated the Constitution when they made changes to their laws with respect to the election.  They didn’t go through the legislature, which ended up disenfranchising voters in Texas and OTHER states.  The Court not hearing it doesn’t mean it had no merit.  

    The way it is now, a company has to have a presence inside a given district to file in the district. That’s why the Western District is so active now. It used to be the Eastern District. It has nothing to do with the elected officials.  

    Why would Texas winterize a power grid when they almost never gets such weather? The insulated nature of the system is not the issue.  The failure of renewables is. They require more of a traditionally generated base load because they are inconsistent.  The push for renewables caused it.  Not natural gas or coal.  

    Texas’s “Trumpian riff raff” has done a great job.  That’s why people are flocking from disaster blue states like CA and NY. Texas is a growing state with a much better business environment.  So is Florida.  Gee, I wonder what they have in common?  
    Good Lord, this tired disinformation again? Please, sit down before you embarrass yourself.

    Texas' economy is heavily dependent upon oil, and Florida's upon tourism. The economic impact, and the recovery, has been bifurcated and has disproportionately impacted people on the lower end of the economic spectrum and those in industries hardest hit. Census survey data indicated a three-fold increase in people experiencing food insecurity as a result of the pandemic. So yeah, it hasn't impacted my relatively recession-proof white collar household much, but I can't say the same for numerous people I know. Is Texas doing so well when THOUSANDS of people turn out for food distribution? 

    Texas should winterize their GD power grid because this is now the second time in 10 years that cold weather has caused large-scale power outages. Texas, in their Wild West wisdom, ignored the recommendations that came out of their post mortem on the 2011 freeze and blackouts. I guess that's what you get when you elect an attorney general who's been under indictment his entire term.


    muthuk_vanalingamStrangeDays
  • Reply 14 of 19
    sdw2001sdw2001 Posts: 17,715member
    sdw2001 said:
    Good Lord.   Texas tried to have the election overturned in other states because those states violated the Constitution when they made changes to their laws with respect to the election.  They didn’t go through the legislature, which ended up disenfranchising voters in Texas and OTHER states.  The Court not hearing it doesn’t mean it had no merit.  

    The way it is now, a company has to have a presence inside a given district to file in the district. That’s why the Western District is so active now. It used to be the Eastern District. It has nothing to do with the elected officials.  

    Why would Texas winterize a power grid when they almost never gets such weather? The insulated nature of the system is not the issue.  The failure of renewables is. They require more of a traditionally generated base load because they are inconsistent.  The push for renewables caused it.  Not natural gas or coal.  

    Texas’s “Trumpian riff raff” has done a great job.  That’s why people are flocking from disaster blue states like CA and NY. Texas is a growing state with a much better business environment.  So is Florida.  Gee, I wonder what they have in common?  
    Good Lord, this tired disinformation again? Please, sit down before you embarrass yourself.

    Texas' economy is heavily dependent upon oil, and Florida's upon tourism. The economic impact, and the recovery, has been bifurcated and has disproportionately impacted people on the lower end of the economic spectrum and those in industries hardest hit. Census survey data indicated a three-fold increase in people experiencing food insecurity as a result of the pandemic. So yeah, it hasn't impacted my relatively recession-proof white collar household much, but I can't say the same for numerous people I know. Is Texas doing so well when THOUSANDS of people turn out for food distribution? 

    Texas should winterize their GD power grid because this is now the second time in 10 years that cold weather has caused large-scale power outages. Texas, in their Wild West wisdom, ignored the recommendations that came out of their post mortem on the 2011 freeze and blackouts. I guess that's what you get when you elect an attorney general who's been under indictment his entire term.


    The fact that you are actually arguing about the economic health of TX and FL and their respective economic bases is hilarious.  Florida, despite the impact on tourism from the pandemic, is booming.  So is Texas.  People are moving to both states in droves because of their business environments and sane policies. They have low taxes and reasonable regulatory environments.  You can quote all the cherry-picked “food insecurity” stats you want, it won’t make the blue states look good by comparison.  The fact is you made this partisan with your absurd attack on Trump supporting politicians and conservative policies.   You’ll soon wish you didn’t, because there is no argument concerning which policies work better.  People vote with their wallets and feet.   Go try to buy a house in any major market in Florida.  The demand is overwhelming.  Take a look at what’s going with, say the stand up comedy exodus from LA to Austin, TX.  It’s not about people who support Trump.  It’s about good governance, and liberty.   

    As for the grid, it’s clearly flawed.  That’s not the point.  The issue is an over reliance on renewables, despite their oil industry.  What side of the spectrum do you think that came from? The CEO of their system was forced out over this, and I believe the entire board too.  My point is it’s not about how the state is being run in general.  And that certainly has nothing to do with federal patent courts.   

    One more thing on being embarrassed.  To be blunt, you’re out of your league here.  A family member has been deeply involved in the patent system at the highest levels, including extensive experience in Texas.  I have close contacts in Florida and am well-versed in their economic policies.  Most of all, I follow these issues closely and am actually looking at the data.   

    Have a nice day.  
  • Reply 15 of 19
    crowleycrowley Posts: 8,838member
    Removed: On second thought I don't want to get involved in a conversation about power generation in Texas.  None of my business.
    edited March 21 muthuk_vanalingam
  • Reply 16 of 19
    StrangeDaysStrangeDays Posts: 11,664member
    gatorguy said:
    macwiz44 said:
    The reality is we need massive patent reform. 

    - Ideas should not be allowed to be patented. 
    They aren't. 
    https://www.ipwatchdog.com/2018/11/17/protecting-idea-can-ideas-be-patented/
    "The moral of the story is that mere ideas cannot be protected, so inventors need to think in terms of an invention.  Inventions can be patented. Ideas cannot be patented."
    And yet, it is the ideas that are argued in court, not the implementation (code). Implementation is code, code is written uniquely, and code is already protected by copyright. Patents for software are entirely stupid and well beyond broken. Copy and paste theft should be protected, via copyright law. But they never argue copyright because of course the code (implementation) is unique. So they argue patent cases on more general ideas, calling them processes. Thus, broken patent system. 
    edited March 22 watto_cobra
  • Reply 17 of 19
    StrangeDaysStrangeDays Posts: 11,664member

    sdw2001 said:
    Huh. Texas again.

    Between don't with my internal policies Texas trying to get elections overturned in other states (which had already gone through two or three recounts), their reluctance to hook up with national power grids and their failure to winterize their power production facilities (it don't get that cold that often), and their reluctance to implement any infection control protocols one wonders what will next be coming from that state.

    Certainly it's the home turf of the patent troll courts - and every time I see them mentioned in the news it just seems like the state is just stuffed full of fatheads.

    Methinks if Texans want to regain the respect of the nation the first step they must take is to vote out the riff-raff they have running the state and elect some decent non-Trumpian reality-based local government - then again, maybe there's a reason that the state is run by such a pathetic collection of bozos.
    Good Lord.   Texas tried to have the election overturned in other states because those states violated the Constitution when they made changes to their laws with respect to the election.  They didn’t go through the legislature, which ended up disenfranchising voters in Texas and OTHER states.  The Court not hearing it doesn’t mean it had no merit.  

    The way it is now, a company has to have a presence inside a given district to file in the district. That’s why the Western District is so active now. It used to be the Eastern District. It has nothing to do with the elected officials.  

    Why would Texas winterize a power grid when they almost never gets such weather? The insulated nature of the system is not the issue.  The failure of renewables is. They require more of a traditionally generated base load because they are inconsistent.  The push for renewables caused it.  Not natural gas or coal.  

    Texas’s “Trumpian riff raff” has done a great job.  That’s why people are flocking from disaster blue states like CA and NY. Texas is a growing state with a much better business environment.  So is Florida.  Gee, I wonder what they have in common?  
    Nope. Every court found it was within those states’ right to offer COVID19 safety measures to their voters. And again, that isn’t any of Texas’ business, and has zero bearing on Texas voters. No one was disenfranchised. Texas stooges just tried to steal the election, and failed. Just like the other 60+ cases — all lost, several heard by Republican judges, some even appointed by the last guy. 

    Nope. Ex-energy guy here in Louisiana (Shell). The Texas power failed has zilch to do w/ renewable energy, of which only around 10% was wind (which works fine in artic regions btw). The vast majority of TX power was natural gas, and their pipes froze — despite warnings 10 years ago about this very issue after the last freeze. TX power companies simply failed to insulate because it was unregulated and thus optional. They chose not to. And because TX also chose not to hook their grid up to the regional and national grids to avoid regulation, they couldn’t import power. Oops. Texas failures all the way. 

    As for CA people moving to TX, sure, lots are — because CA is the most populous state in the country, and expensive due to high demand. Your suggestion amounts to the classic joke, “Nobody eats there anymore, it’s too crowded!”
    edited March 22 muthuk_vanalingam
  • Reply 18 of 19
    StrangeDaysStrangeDays Posts: 11,664member

    sdw2001 said:
    sdw2001 said:
    Good Lord.   Texas tried to have the election overturned in other states because those states violated the Constitution when they made changes to their laws with respect to the election.  They didn’t go through the legislature, which ended up disenfranchising voters in Texas and OTHER states.  The Court not hearing it doesn’t mean it had no merit.  

    The way it is now, a company has to have a presence inside a given district to file in the district. That’s why the Western District is so active now. It used to be the Eastern District. It has nothing to do with the elected officials.  

    Why would Texas winterize a power grid when they almost never gets such weather? The insulated nature of the system is not the issue.  The failure of renewables is. They require more of a traditionally generated base load because they are inconsistent.  The push for renewables caused it.  Not natural gas or coal.  

    Texas’s “Trumpian riff raff” has done a great job.  That’s why people are flocking from disaster blue states like CA and NY. Texas is a growing state with a much better business environment.  So is Florida.  Gee, I wonder what they have in common?  
    Good Lord, this tired disinformation again? Please, sit down before you embarrass yourself.

    Texas' economy is heavily dependent upon oil, and Florida's upon tourism. The economic impact, and the recovery, has been bifurcated and has disproportionately impacted people on the lower end of the economic spectrum and those in industries hardest hit. Census survey data indicated a three-fold increase in people experiencing food insecurity as a result of the pandemic. So yeah, it hasn't impacted my relatively recession-proof white collar household much, but I can't say the same for numerous people I know. Is Texas doing so well when THOUSANDS of people turn out for food distribution? 

    Texas should winterize their GD power grid because this is now the second time in 10 years that cold weather has caused large-scale power outages. Texas, in their Wild West wisdom, ignored the recommendations that came out of their post mortem on the 2011 freeze and blackouts. I guess that's what you get when you elect an attorney general who's been under indictment his entire term.


    One more thing on being embarrassed.  To be blunt, you’re out of your league here.  A family member has been deeply involved in the patent system at the highest levels, including extensive experience in Texas.  I have close contacts in Florida and am well-versed in their economic policies.  Most of all, I follow these issues closely and am actually looking at the data.   

    Have a nice day.  
    Nah. You’re a fake expert with zero expertise in anything relevant to these topics. 
  • Reply 19 of 19
    jrg_uk said:
    I just want to know what was it about FairPlay, introduced when the iTunes music store began in 2003 or so, that took them until 2015 to decide to sue for patent violation?

    Or is it another of the bogus patents that espouses an idea wrapped up in impressive sounding patent lingo, rather than any genuine technique for implementing it?
    This is that holding company established by old Microsoft execs that acquires patents - I think they have a portfolio of something like 70,000 - just to squeeze legitimate producers of real products out of royalties.

    Like those pirates haven't made enough money by stealing other people's ideas ...
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