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Vonage pays Sprint $80m to square patent dispute

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Vonage is to pay $80m to Sprint to settle a infringement case over Voice over Packet (VOP) patents held by Sprint.

Vonage is paying $35m for the past use of the technology, $40m for a full paid future license and $5m for prepayment of services.

Last month, a Kansas jury found that Vonage had infringed six Sprint patents and awarded the telecoms giant $69.5m in damages and a five per cent royalty on revenues. Today's, larger, settlement now means that it has Sprint off its back for good.

In March, Vonage lost another patent infringement case against Verizon. A US jury awarded Verizon $58m and five per cent royalties. Vonage was denied the chance to appeal. We assume Verizon will try to wring Vonage until its pips squeak.

In the past Vonage said it could afford to pay fund both settlements. But the company remains heavily lossmaking. It needs to get more customers pronto. ®

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