Apple’s FaceTime Suffers From VirnetX Fallout
Is Apple’s (NASDAQ:AAPL) patent battle with a major patent-licensing company costing it more than just money? Last year Apple was ordered to pay $368 million in damages to VirnetX (AMEX:VHC) after several of the Cupertino-based company’s products were found to be infringing on a patented technology that it uses for FaceTime and iMessage. The companies are currently in litigation over the amount of royalties that Apple should pay.
As a result of this trial, Apple designed a technical workaround for FaceTime that keeps the service from infringing on VirtneX’s patents. However, it appears that the Apple’s creative patent-infringement solution is having a detrimental effect on FaceTime.
ArsTechnica spoke with Jeff Lease, a VirnetX investor who attended the original jury trial as well as various other hearings related to the case. According to Lease, Apple’s workaround solution for FaceTime has diminished the overall quality of the service and netted the company “over half a million” complaint calls.