The Patent Trial and Appeal Board of the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) today denied five petitions for so-called inter partes review filed by Apple, which sought to challenged the validity of certain claims of three of VirnetX’s U.S. patents at stake.
The patent board has determined that the five petitions were not filed within the time limit imposed by the statute and therefore has declined to institute review of these claims between the parties involved.
Furthermore, the USPTO Board has tossed out of the window Apple’s request to join the inter partes reviews previously filed by Microsoft, as those had already been terminated.
Specifically, Apple sought review of certain claims of the U.S. Patent Nos. 7,921,211 (‘211 patent), 7,418,504 (‘504 patent) and 7,491,151 (‘151 patent) owned by VirnetX, a patent holding firm which owns an impressive portfolio of patents related to wireless networking and LTE technology.
VirnetX CEO Kendall Larsen said today’s decisions means that the USPTO has either “declined to institute review or terminated 37 IPR proceedings that were filed by New Bay, Apple, RPX, and Microsoft.”
Last September, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit tossed out a verdict handed down by a Texas jury in late 2012 that would’ve slapped Apple with $368 million in damages on the basis that the FaceTime feature infringes on VirnetX’s intellectual property, namely the ‘211, ‘504 and ‘181 patents.
However, appeals court did affirm the validity of the claims-at-issue of these three patents in its September 2014 ruling and sent the case back to trial for further proceeds.