Court Rejects Microsoft Latest Appeal In i4i Case

The decision is another victory for i4i, which last August won a $200 million judgment against Microsoft pertaining to technology built into Word 2007 and Office 2007 that's used to customize XML code. The court has slapped Microsoft with an additional $90 million in fines after ruling that Microsoft willfully infringed on i4i's patent.

Microsoft and Toronto-based i4i have been going back and forth specifically over patents for Office and Word products used for editing XML code. The patent in question shows how to change the architecture and content of a document by removing dependency on document-encoding technology.

In a statement, i4i Chairman Loudon Owen applauded the court's ruling: "i4i is delighted by this ruling from Federal Circuit Court of Appeals. This has been a long and arduous process, but this decision is a powerful reinforcement of the message that smaller enterprises and inventors who own intellectual property can and will be protected."

Last August, Judge Leonard Davis of the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Texas upheld an earlier ruling and required Microsoft to stop selling Word with the infringing technology in September. Microsoft complied by removing the patented technology from Word.

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Microsoft says it's still weighing its options in the case, which include taking the case to the Supreme Court.

"We're disappointed with the decision. As far as next steps, we continue to believe there are important matters of patent law that still need to be properly addressed, and we are considering our options for going forward," Microsoft spokesperson Kevin Kutz said in a statement.