Jury orders Apple to pay $300 million in Optis patent trial

Following a retrial in a patent dispute, a Texas jury decided on Friday that Apple should settle $300 million in royalties as a division of a global fight with Optis Wireless Technology concerning the iPhone maker’s ownership of patents on the LTE cellular standard. 

The trial mostly highlighted the sum Apple should pay PanOptis Patent Management and its Optis Cellular and Unwired Planet units to cover previous and upcoming usage of Optis’ patents. 

U.S. District Court Judge Rodney Gilstrap upheld in April a retiral concerning the damages upheld by the software developer towards Optis. 

The judge stated the jury should have the opportunity to take into consideration whether the royalty requirement was parallel with the fundamental claim that regular patents should be licensed based on “fair, reasonable and non-discriminatory” terms. 

“We thank the jury for their time but are disappointed by the verdict and plan to appeal,” Apple spokesperson informed The Verge. “Optis makes no products, and its sole business is to sue companies using patents they accumulate. We will continue to defend against their attempts to extract unreasonable payments for patents they acquire,” he declared. 

Last year, Optis scored a whopping $506 million in damage for the Big Tech titan, which afterward Apple convinced District Judge Gilstrap to seek a retrial. 

Optis Wireless Technology possesses a portfolio of global patent families, concerning 3G and 4G essential technologies, in addition to various non-standardized technologies located in smartphones, modems, laptops, tablets, and mobile infrastructure equipment.  

Since the company does not produce any products, the trial’s five patents were initially released to Panasonic Corp., Samsung Electronics Co., and LG Electronics Co. 

The patents in question are the following: US Patent 8,019,332, US Patent 8,385,284, US Patent 8,411,557, US Patent 9,001,774, and US Patent 8,102,833.  

The Texas case is one of Optis’ augmented attempts to accumulate around $7 billion from Apple under the pretense that the OS originator is implementing Optis’ 4G patents into its iPhones, iPads, and Watches. 

According to the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office database, in 2014, Panasonic and LG shifted to Optis Cellular ownership of two patents, while in 2017 Samsung relocated its patent to Unwired Planet.  

Earlier this month, Apple reported a 50 percent year-over-year ascend in iPhone sales, accumulating the titan’s revenues to $81.4 billion for its fiscal Q3, with a 36 percent rise from a year earlier.

It is worth noting that Optis filed a lawsuit against Apple in the High Court of England to globally establish a royal rate for its patents. The move prompted Apple lawyers to threaten the British court of pulling out its products from the British market if it was obliged to pay a “commercially unacceptable” fee.