APPLE LAWSUIT: Apple Inc. has succeeded in getting two additional Smartflash LLC patents invalidated, bringing it closer to escaping a $533 million patent verdict. The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office on May 26 invalidated two of three patents owned by Smartflash LLC, a patent licensing firm that was awarded a $532.9 million verdict against Apple in February 2015, according to Bloomberg.
A three-judge panel at the patent agency found that the two patents never should have been issued in the first place because the idea of storing and paying for data is an abstract concept, not a specific invention.
Last year, a federal jury for the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Texas found certain iTunes apps to be infringing upon Smartflash LLC’s patents, related to digital rights management, data storage, and managing access through payment systems. Apple appealed the decision, arguing that the patents were invalid.