VirnetX and Microsoft settle patent dispute over Skype
VirnetX and Microsoft have signed a settlement agreement and extended their license agreement over their patent infringement lawsuit regarding Skype. VirnetX is an Internet security software and technology company with patented technology for secure communications including 4G LTE security, video conferencing, VoIP, instant messaging, smartphones, and eReaders.
VirnetX holds 107 U.S. and international patents covering real-time communication applications and has 100 pending patent applications. VirnetX depends heavily on income from its patents as a main source of its revenue. Under the terms of the amended agreement, Microsoft has agreed to pay $23 million to VirnetX to settle the patent dispute and expand Microsoft’s license for Skype.
Kendall Larsen, Chief Executive Officer and Chairman of VirnetX, Inc released a statement about their agreement with Microsoft:
We are pleased to have come to an agreement with Microsoft Corporation and put all our legal disputes behind us. This agreement allows us to focus our resources towards the release of our Gabriel Secure Communication Platform and Gabriel Collaboration Suite products in the first-half of 2015 and our ongoing licensing and strategic partnership efforts.
A Microsoft spokesperson also released a statement regarding the agreement:
Microsoft Corporation is pleased to have come to an agreement with VirnetX and that the settlement includes an expanded license to VirnetX’s entire patent portfolio.
Hopefully, this agreement will put an end to VirnetX’s patent problems with Microsoft and Skype.
In 2010, VirtnetX won a $200 million dollar settlement from Microsoft, and then sued Microsoft again in April 2013, over six patent violations VirnetX said Skype had broken under the terms of their licensing agreement made in 2010. Microsoft bought Skype in 2011 for $8.5 billion. In the April 2013 lawsuit, VirnetX claimed that Skype infringed upon six patents not included in the licensing agreement that VirnetX and Microsoft signed in 2010.Further reading: Microsoft, Skype