Intel Must Pay $2.2B to VLSI, says WDTX Jury and Judge Albright

(March 2, 2021 – Waco, Texas) — Intel was just found making significant money off two of VLSI’s patented inventions without any regard for the inventor of those technologies and has been ordered to pay $2.18 Billion in damages.  These patents, US7,725,759, a “System and method of managing clock speed in an electronic device,” and US7,523,373, “Minimum memory operating voltage technique” were the subject of a case captioned VLSI Technology LLC v. Intel Corporation, case number 6:21-cv-0057-ADA, which played out in Judge Alan Albright’s court in the Western District of Texas for almost two years.  This decision reflects an ongoing trend for deliberate and serial infringers to be held accountable through massive jury verdicts.

Both patents claim to increase the power and speed of processors.  Intel claimed to not have infringed either patent, adding later that one patent was invalid anyway because it involved technologies Intel was working on, even filing such a complaint with the Patent Trial and Appeals Board.  The jury, as primary finders of fact, disagreed.  Intel also argued that VLSI, known as a designer of circuits, currently supports R&D capacities and sells no products directly.  

The $2.18B was calculated as $1.5B for infringing on one patent and $675M for the other.  

There are still other cases between VLSI and Intel going on, stemming another 6 patents.  Again, this $2.2B was for 2 of 8 patents before Judge Albright.  

The Western District of Texas, as well as the adjoining Eastern District, is popular with inventors and defendants in patent cases because they favor streamlined cases with low overhead.  These Judges have technical experience and many can read source code, Discovery (evidence gathering) happens early in cases, and the wealth disparity between plaintiff and defendant is democratized through e-filings and quicker rulings than many federal districts.  This Court was one of few that is open for such trials during this phase of Covid lockdowns.