Apple has been ordered to pay Mobile Telecommunications Technologies LLC US$23.6 million for infringing on six patents related to 1990s-era pager technology. MTel claimed the messaging and WiFi technology used in the iPhone, iPad and iPod touch infringe on patents it owns, and a federal jury in Marshall, Texas, agreed.
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Assuming Apple can't get the MTel ruling overturned, the company behind the once market-leading SkyTel two-way pager system could be in a strong position to target other companies that offer text messaging services. In this case, Apple wasn't facing off against a patent troll, so if it really was infringing on MTel's patents, it's time to pay up and move on.