Less than a month after Apple paid $440M to settle one FaceTime patent infringement claim, it was faced with another one, by VoIP-Pal. In this case, however, Apple is calling for a court to reject VoIP-Pal’s claims in the most unambiguous of terms …
In the case of Virnet, Apple fought the case for close to a decade before finally deciding to settle. That decision seemed to encourage VoIP-Pal, despite the fact that its case was obviously baseless, as we noted at the time.
To say that the lawsuit seems a stretch is something of an understatement. It literally begins with the history of telephony back to directly-connected telephone systems.
It then takes us painfully through the history of communications systems between then and now, before attempting to argue that it invented the idea of connecting people together over a mix of private and public networks […]
Since the patent application was only filed in 2018, while FaceTime was launched in 2010, and iMessage in 2011, it’s hard to see how VoIP-Pal.com can claim it invented technology Apple was using eight years earlier.
Apple calls for dismissal of VoIP-Pal claims
Patently Apple has spotted that Apple is now calling for the claims to be dismissed. It not only wants the judge to rule that it didn’t infringe the patents, but it wants the patents themselves to be torn up.
This is an action for a declaratory judgment arising under the patent laws of the United States, Title 35 of the United States Code. Apple seeks declaratory judgments that it does not infringe any claim of the ’234 and ’721 patents and that the ’234 and ’721 patents are invalid.
Apple notes that this isn’t the first time VoIP-Pal has tried to extract cash from the iPhone maker, and all previous attempts have failed.
Its four prior cases against Apple have resulted in (1) final judgment in favor of Apple based on the invalidity of the two patents-in-suit; (2) final judgment again in favor of Apple based on the invalidity of four patents-in-suit; (3) voluntary dismissal of a complaint filed in the Western District of Texas; and (4) delivering a covenant not-to-sue to Apple in an attempt to escape invalidation of two more patents.
You can read the full document over at Patently Apple.
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About the Author
Ben Lovejoy is a British technology writer and EU Editor for 9to5Mac. He’s known for his op-eds and diary pieces, exploring his experience of Apple products over time, for a more rounded review. He also writes fiction, with two technothriller novels, a couple of SF shorts and a rom-com!