Apple ordered to pay $234 million in patent dispute


Jury ruled in favour of University of Wisconsin-Madison after it sued iPhone maker over A7 processor patent but had asked for $400 million payout

Apple has been hit with a $234 million (£151 million) legal bill after a jury ruled the iPhone maker had breached patents held by the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

The University’s research division, Wisconsin Alumni Research Foundation (WARF), had brought the case against Apple claiming its A7 processor – found in the iPhone 5s, iPad Air and iPad Mini 2 – infringed on a patent it had held since 1998.

A US Jury ruled in favour of WARF who brought the case against Apple in January 2014, with closing arguments set to be heard today (October 16). The University has also previously used the same patent to sue Intel, who settled for an undisclosed amount.

WARF had claimed the manufacturer should pay $2.74 per device sold, which would have been worth around $400 million, but the jury settled on the $234 million figure following three hours of deliberation on October 19.

WARF has also asked the court to extend the ruling to other Apple processors, including the A8 and A8x found on the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus – Apple’s best-selling iPhone ever.

The ruling is a blow for Apple, a company that has found itself locked in several patent disputes in the last few years, including a bitter billion-dollar battle with rival Samsung.