RIM wins reversal in $147.2 million Mformation patent case

Company says that a U.S. District Court judge has overturned a jury's decision. Mformation will have the opportunity to appeal the ruling.

Research In Motion has succeeded in getting overturned a verdict that would have forced it to pay $147.2 million in patent-infringement damages to mobile device management company Mformation.

The U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California has overturned a trial verdict and granted RIM's "motion for judgment as a matter of law." According to RIM, the court found that the evidence in the case did not adequately support the jury's verdict.

"We appreciate the judge's careful consideration of this case. RIM did not infringe on Mformation's patent and we are pleased with this victory," Steve Zipperstein, RIM's chief legal officer, said today in a statement. "The purpose of the patent system is to encourage innovation, but the system is still too often exploited in pursuit of other goals."

Mformation sued RIM in 2008, charging the company with infringing its technology in BlackBerry devices. RIM has argued that it did nothing wrong and that Mformation's patents are not valid.

Last month, a jury disagreed and found that RIM's BlackBerry Enterprise Server -- software that lets companies remotely manage employee devices -- infringes Mformation's patents in 18.4 million BlackBerry handsets.

Using that figure, the jury applied an $8 damage per device to arrive at the $147.2 million figure .

Although RIM no longer needs to pay that sum, Mformation has the right to appeal the court's ruling. In the event it does so, and the appeal is successful, a new trial would be held.

CNET has contacted Mformation for comment on the ruling. We will update this story when we have more information.

 

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