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Apple avoids $94M patent infringement suit leveled by patent troll GPNE

Apple on Wednesday came out unscathed from a patent suit leveled by non-practicing entity GPNE, which claimed the Cupertino tech giant infringed on mobile technology properties with its iPhone and iPad products.

The case, which dates back to 2011, saw Honolulu, Hawaii-based GPNE Corp. assert patents related to 3G wireless technologies against Apple. GPNE sought $94 million in damages, but received nothing after a San Jose jury found Apple not in infringement, reports CNET.

In its complaint, GPNE company's suit claimed certain Apple devices using cellular GPRS services, specifically those pertaining to what Apple called pager technology. The iPhone 4, iPhone 4S, iPhone 5, iPad 2, iPad 3 and iPad Mini were named as infringing products in the suit.

Apple's statement in full:

We are pleased the jury in California saw through GPNE's attempt to extort money from Apple for 20 year old pager patents that have expired, wasting time for everyone involved. GPNE is a patent troll with no active business other than patent litigation. They have sent more than 300 demand letters in the past year to everyone from truckers and farmers to roofers and dairies threatening costly legal entanglements if these small businesses didn't pay them off — this isn't right. Apple invents products that revolutionize industries, and relies upon the U.S. patent system to protect our innovation. We urge congressional leaders to continue focusing on reform in this important area of patent law.

As for GPNE, the company's lawyers said "it was a hard-fought trial with a tough claim construction in a case in which our firm was hired a few months ago. We strongly believe the judge will address the underlying legal issues in post-verdict motions."

GPNE is using the same patent family to go after other big-name tech companies, including Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Garmin, Nokia, Pantech, Research in Motion, Sharp, and Sony Ericsson.