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Financially troubled RIM probably doesn’t have two pennies to rub together, so the company must be thrilled that it just saved itself $147.2 million.
RIM announced today that the decision in its patent battle against mobile software company Mformation Technologies was overturned, saving RIM from paying the hefty award.
Mformation brought the case against RIM in 2008, arguing that RIM’s BlackBerry Enterprise Server software violated its patents. The jury agreed, and last month RIM was ordered to pay $8 for each of the estimated $18.4 million devices it sold in the U.S. (If there was ever a good reason to have poor smartphone sales, this was it.)
RIM, clearly, is happy with the way things turned out. “We’re pleased with the victory,” RIM’s Chief Legal Officer Steve Zipperstein said in a statement today. Zipperstein also used the victory to criticize the patent system, which he said is being exploited by unsavory characters for illegitimate reasons.
With defeat snatched from the jaws of victory, Mformation now has the option to appeal the latest decision. Doing so, however, would mean having to wrangle up an entirely new jury, and we’d have another trial on our hands.
Mformation said in a statement that it’s disappointed by the turn of events.
“We steadfastly believe that RIM’s BlackBerry Enterprise Server software product infringes Mformation’s ‘917 patent and that courts will ultimately rule in our favor. We are assessing all legal options available to us and will determine the next steps shortly,” CEO Todd DeLaughter said in the statement.