Feeds

US Supremes sit on hands in $625m patent case, hand Apple victory

Mirror Worlds' world shattered

Choosing a cloud hosting partner with confidence

The US Supreme Court has handed Apple a victory in its long-running patent-infringement battle with Mirror Worlds LLC, declining to review a lower court's decision to overturn a $625.5m judgment that had been leveled against Cupertino.

The Supremes made no comment on the case, merely lumping it into a list of 157 cases released on Monday morning for which it merely said "The petitions for writs of certiorari are denied" – meaning, in legalese, "No, we're not going to let you try to convince us to overturn the overturning of the original decision. You lose. Go home."

The case was originally filed in the famously plaintiff-friendly US District Court, Eastern District of Texas, Tyler Division, in March 2008. Mirror Worlds alleged that Apple had infringed up four of its patents – 6,725,427, 6,638,313, 6,006,227, and 6,768,999 – but by the time that court's jury had reached its verdict, the allegations had been whittled down to the first three, which Mirror Worlds said that Apple had infringed upon for its Spotlight search, Cover Flow item-display, and Time Machine automated backup features.

In October 2010, the jury in that trial agreed with Mirror Worlds, concluded that Apple's infringement was "willful", and granted damages of $208.5m per patent. Apple – surprise! – objected, and challenged the judgment.

In June 2011, Apple got its way when a judge in the same Tyler, Texas, division threw out the whole $625.5m ball of wax, saying that although Mirror Worlds' patents were, indeed, valid, Apple didn't infringe upon them. "Mirror Worlds may have painted an appealing picture for the jury," US District Court Judge Leonard Davis wrote in his decision, "but it failed to lay a solid foundation sufficient to support important elements it was required to establish under the law."

Mirror Worlds cried foul, and escalated the case up to the US Supreme Court. And on Monday it received word that the Supremes weren't interested in reviewing Davis' decision.

Interestingly, just last month a New York IP acquisition and licensing company, Network-1, bought Mirror Worlds LLC's patent portfolio – well, actually its "newly formed subsidiary, Mirror Worlds Technologies, LLC" bought them – for $3m and stock-warrant considerations.

Network-1 can't be happy with Monday's denial of the writ of certiorari. But don't feel too sorry for them – their website notes that their "current focus is on Power over Ethernet (PoE)," so keep your eye on that space in the next round of patent wars. ®

Business security measures using SSL

More from The Register

next story
Phones 4u slips into administration after EE cuts ties with Brit mobe retailer
More than 5,500 jobs could be axed if rescue mission fails
Apple CEO Tim Cook: TV is TERRIBLE and stuck in the 1970s
The iKing thinks telly is far too fiddly and ugly – basically, iTunes
Israeli spies rebel over mass-snooping on innocent Palestinians
'Disciplinary treatment will be sharp and clear' vow spy-chiefs
Huawei ditches new Windows Phone mobe plans, blames poor sales
Giganto mobe firm slams door shut on Microsoft. OH DEAR
Phones 4u website DIES as wounded mobe retailer struggles to stay above water
Founder blames 'ruthless network partners' for implosion
Found inside ISIS terror chap's laptop: CELINE DION tunes
REPORT: Stash of terrorist material found in Syria Dell box
OECD lashes out at tax avoiding globocorps' location-flipping antics
You hear that, Amazon, Google, Microsoft et al?
Show us your Five-Eyes SECRETS says Privacy International
Refusal to disclose GCHQ canteen menus and prices triggers Euro Human Rights Court action
prev story

Whitepapers

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk
A single remote control platform for user support is be key to providing an efficient helpdesk. Retain full control over the way in which screen and keystroke data is transmitted.
Saudi Petroleum chooses Tegile storage solution
A storage solution that addresses company growth and performance for business-critical applications of caseware archive and search along with other key operational systems.
Security and trust: The backbone of doing business over the internet
Explores the current state of website security and the contributions Symantec is making to help organizations protect critical data and build trust with customers.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.