I4i versus Microsoft, Round 2

Remember the case in which Microsoft was said to pay more than US$240 million in damages, because of infringing a patent owned by I4i?, well this is now round 2. The U.S. Federal Court of Appeals affirmed its original decision on Wednesday

During the trial ( before the first appeal ), I4i said that Microsoft had needed a way to handle so-called "custom" XML, and had represented the smaller company as its "partner" -- that is, until it decided to develop its own custom XML editing capabilities within Word 2003. Even though Microsoft knew that i4i held a patent on the technology, Microsoft, went ahead and added the capability into Word without telling i4i.

The first appeal required Microsoft to pay more than US$240 million in damages, and most importantly - which is basically Microsoft's main problem, because surely it cannot be the "small" amount of money - remove the feature in Word 2003 and 2007

Much of the latest decision is identical to the December document, except for an expanded explanation of the three-judge panel's decision to uphold the "willfulness" issue.

"A reasonable jury could have concluded that Microsoft 'willfully' infringed the '449 patent based on the evidence presented at trial," the judges wrote. The decision pointed to evidence presented at the trial showing that Microsoft employees attended demonstrations of i4i software and received i4i sales kits that identified the software as patented technology. This piece of evidence and others imply that Microsoft was aware of the i4i patent, the decision says.

The U.S. Federal Court of Appeals has once again upheld a jury's verdict that Microsoft willfully infringed on patents awarded to i4i.

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