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Google to Pay $ 15.1 Million for Violating Patents Over Audio Software

CIO Insider Team | Thursday, 22 June, 2023

According to a ruling made public by a federal jury in Delaware, Alphabet's Google must pay patent holding company Personal Audio LLC $15.1 million for violating two patents pertaining to audio software.

Personal Audio claimed that Google Play Music's playlist downloading, navigation, and editing capabilities infringed on its patents.

The jury found that Google intentionally violated the patents, which might cause the judge to triple the amount of the judgement.

Google requested a non-infringement and invalidity ruling from Judge Colm F. Connolly on June 15. Despite a Personal Audio expert testifying that Google's Pixel C tablet infringes, it was claimed that the corporation "presented no evidence about any making, use, or sale of this or any other Google product" in the US.

Google asked the judge to change the term, but the judge refused, saying he would inform the jury if a party offered "an infringement or non-infringement theory inconsistent with my claim construction."

According to federal law, patent holders have up to six years following the expiration of a patent to launch a lawsuit for infringement.

Google said in last week’s motion that a “reasonable jury could not conclude that this limitation is met in any accused product.” Google Play Music, it said, “never used a downloaded playlist file stored in a database when responding to a skip or back command or determining whether to loop.”

A court filing from May stated that Personal Audio, situated in Beaumont, Texas, had asked for $33.1 million in compensation. It initially filed a lawsuit against Google in 2015 based on the patents, which was then transferred from Texas to Delaware.

The San Francisco jury's ruling that Google must pay $32.5 million to Sonos for patent infringement in the midst of a protracted legal battle between the two firms over smart-speaker technology preceded the Delaware verdict by less than a month.

Personal Audio LLC v. Google LLC, No. 1:17-cv-01751, U.S. District Court for the District of Delaware.

The damages judgment came after Personal Audio won the liability phase of a split trial in a dispute involving US Patent Nos. 6,199,076 and 7,509,178 that was brought in September 2015. Two years later, Texas relocated the case to Delaware.

According to federal law, patent holders have up to six years following the expiration of a patent to launch a lawsuit for infringement. However, damages are only available for the duration of the patent. Section 286 of the Patent Act limits any such compensation to infringement that took place within the six years before the owner's lawsuit.

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