Last week, a federal jury in Marshall, Texas ruled that Apple had infringed a digital rights management patent. The infringer was ordered to pay $ 308.5 million to the private company Personalized Media Communications (PMC), which owns the aforementioned patent.
In filing the lawsuit, PMC alleged that Apple had infringed a patent on FairPlay (Apple’s DRM technology), which is used to distribute digital content through iTunes, the App Store and Apple Music.
The original lawsuit was filed in 2015, but Apple challenged the validity of the patent before the Patent Office of Appeals. The board ruled that some of the patent’s provisions were invalid, but last year a US appeals court overturned the board’s decision and the case was brought to trial on the merits.
In a similar case, PMC v. Google and YouTube (with other patents), the defendant was able to defend its position. A lawsuit, in which PMC accuses Netflix of violating the service, is pending.
The source notes that PMC exclusively licenses its own patents and defends its rights in court without acquiring third-party patents for prosecution purposes. In other words, the company should not be considered a patent troll. PMC’s licensees include Cisco, Motorola, Panasonic, Samsung, Sharp, Sony and other well-known companies.