Feeds

Vonage ordered to pay $58m in Verizon patent flap

Vonage 'delighted' damage wasn't more

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

A US District Court jury said Vonage Holdings violated three patents held by Verizon Communications and ordered the VoIP telephony company to pay $58m in damages and annual royalties.

If upheld on appeal, the award could represent a considerable crimp in operations for Vonage, which last year racked up a net loss of $286m on sales of $607m. A requirement to pay a royalty of 5.5 per cent of future revenue for any ongoing infringement obviously wouldn't help, either.

The jury has yet to decide if Verizon is entitled to an injunction prohibiting Vonage from using technologies covered by the patents, a decision that could be still more damaging to the smaller company.

Verizon had sought damages of $197m for Vonage's alleged infringement of at least five patents, which were related to technologies for internet-routed phone communications, including those that connect calls to ordinary phone lines and more traditional features such as call forwarding. Verizon said it has lost hundreds of thousands of customers as a result of Vonage, which has about 2.2 million customers.

Ever the optimists, Vonage responded to the verdict with a press release announcing it was "delighted" the jury hadn't found even more of Verizon's patents infringed. "Of the seven patents Verizon originally sued on, they prevailed on only three and we expect that verdict to be reversed on appeal," the company said. It also noted that $58m was only 30 per cent of the original sum Verizon sought.

In more substantial remarks, Vonage said it would ask an appeals court for a stay should the jury issue an injunction. "Vonage's customers should see no change to any aspect of their phone service," the company said.

Vonage had argued Verizon's patents were invalid and that even if they were legit, Vonage didn't infringe them anyway. The jury rejected the first prong of that argument, finding all the patents in the case were valid.

In addition to technologies that route Internet calls to traditional phone systems, and those that provide voicemail and call forwarding, the patents also covered the use of Wi-Fi networks for Internet phone service. ®

Gartner critical capabilities for enterprise endpoint backup

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
5 things you didn’t know about cloud backup
IT departments are embracing cloud backup, but there’s a lot you need to know before choosing a service provider. Learn all the critical things you need to know.
Why and how to choose the right cloud vendor
The benefits of cloud-based storage in your processes. Eliminate onsite, disk-based backup and archiving in favor of cloud-based data protection.
Top 8 considerations to enable and simplify mobility
In this whitepaper learn how to successfully add mobile capabilities simply and cost effectively.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?