Research In Motion has been ordered to pay $147.2 million dollars in damages for infringing a mobile device management patent held by US-based Mformation Technologies. A jury decided that RIM’s BlackBerry Enterprise Server infringed the patent, which enables companies to update devices ‘over the air’, and awarded damages based on sales of BES-connected BlackBerry smartphones in the USA from late 2008. The award was calculated on sales of 18.4 million handsets and a royalty of $8 per device.
Rakesh Kushwaha, the founder and CTO of Mformation, said “Mformation created the mobile device management category in the late 1990s and was innovating in this area well before most of the market understood the fundamental importance of wireless mobility management. Our patents are a core part of our innovative products, and are fundamental to the methods used for device management in the market today. We ensured that our early innovations in device management were put through rigorous legal assessment by applying for patents on these innovations in the United States and abroad. Now these patented technologies are central to many critical mobile device management tasks being used by operators, service providers and enterprises around the world, including remote device configuration, lock/wipe and application management. With a total of 27 patents granted or pending, our IP portfolio will allow us to continue to shape the future of the Mobile Device Management market.”
Research In Motion issued a statement that said “RIM is disappointed by the outcome and is evaluating all legal options. Additionally, the trial judge has yet to decide certain legal issues that might impact the verdict. RIM will await those rulings before deciding whether to pursue an appeal. RIM has worked hard for many years to independently develop its leading-edge BlackBerry technology and industry-leading intellectual property portfolio, and RIM does not believe that the Mformation patent in question is valid.”