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Decision by Norfolk judge could cost Google millions

A decision by Norfolk U.S. District Judge Raymond A. Jackson in a closely watched patent case could be costly for Internet giant Google Inc.

Vringo Inc., a small patent and technology company, scored a major win in its ongoing patent battle with Google and other companies after Jackson last week set a 1.36 percent running royalty on U.S.-based revenue from AdWords, Google’s flagship advertising program, according to published reports.

Jackson had earlier ruled that Google had not made significant changes in its infringing program and gave the two sides a last opportunity to agree on a royalty rate. When settlement talks failed, Jackson set the royalty rate at almost exactly the rate Vringo was seeking, according to an article posted on Ars Technica.

In its lawsuit, a Vringo subsidiary originally sought at least $500 million claiming Google and other Internet companies used patented advertising technology without permission.

Jackson’s January rulings build on a 2012 jury decision that Google and other defendants should pay future royalties based on a percentage of advertising revenue until patents expire in 2016. The jury also awarded the plaintiff approximately $30.5 million.

On Jan. 3, Jackson ordered that Vringo’s subsidiary recover an additional $17.3 million for supplemental damages and prejudgment interest.

If the Jan. 28 royalty rate decision is upheld on appeal, the patent case could cost Google hundreds of millions of dollars, the article said.

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