Apple told to pay $308.5 million over digital rights management patent

Apple must pay more than $300 million to Personalized Media Communications after a Texas federal jury found it infringed one of its patents.

From Bloomberg:

Apple must pay $308.5 million to closely held Personalized Media Communications after a federal jury in Marshall, Texas, decided on Friday that the tech giant infringed a patent related to digital rights management. Personalized Media had sued claiming Apple infringed its patent with technology including FairPlay, which is used for the distribution of encrypted content from its iTunes, App Store and Apple Music applications. One expert for Sugar Land, Texas-based Personalized Media had calculated Apple owed $240 million in royalties. After a five-day trial, the jurors in Texas ordered Apple to pay a running royalty, which is generally dependent on the level of sales or usage.

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Apple plans to appeal the ruling, so no money will change hands just yet. Bloomberg reports that Apple said it was “disappointed” by the ruling, stating “Cases like this, brought by companies that don’t make or sell any products, stifle innovation and ultimately harm consumers.”

The US patent Trial and Appeal board had previously ruled the patent was invalid, but this ruling was overturned by a U.S. appeals court last year, with the case going for trial this week.

The patent relates to digital rights management and is used by Apple in services like Apple Music to distribute encrypted content to users.

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