Meta ordered to pay $175 million in patent infringement case

faces a hefty bill after losing a patent infringement lawsuit. A federal judge in Texas has ordered the company to pay nearly $175 million in ongoing royalties to Voxer, the developer of the app called Walkie Talkie. Voxer accused Meta of infringing on its patents and incorporating this technology into and .

In 2006, Tom Katis, the founder of Voxer, began working on a way to solve communications problems he faced while serving in the US Army in Afghanistan Remarks. Katis and his team developed technology that enables live voice and video transmissions, which led to Voxer.

According to the lawsuit, Meta (then known as Facebook) approached Voxer about a collaboration shortly after the app’s release. Voxer is said to have revealed its proprietary technology and patent portfolio to Meta, but the two sides have not reached an agreement. Voxer alleges that while Meta didn’t have live video or voice services at the time, it identified the walkie-talkie developer as a competitor and blocked access to Facebook features like the Find My Friends tool.

Meta debuted Facebook Live in 2015. Katis claims to have had an incidental meeting with a Facebook Live product manager in early 2016 to discuss alleged infringements of Voxer’s patents in that product, but Meta declined to reach an agreement with the to achieve companies. The latter released Instagram Live later that year. “Both products incorporate Voxer’s technology and infringe its patents,” Voxer alleges in the lawsuit.

Meta denied Voxer’s claims in a statement TechCrunch. She plans to appeal the verdict. “We believe the evidence at trial has shown that Meta did not infringe Voxer’s patents,” a spokesman said. “We intend to seek further relief, including filing an appeal.”

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