Comcast settles VoIP patent dispute with Sprint for $250M

Sprint Store sign
Sprint filed suit against Comcast in a Kansas federal court in 2011.

After winning nearly $140 million in March over disputed VoIP patents, Sprint has declared an even bigger victory over Comcast, with the No. 1 U.S. cable company settling with the wireless company for $250 million.

The settlement was revealed in a 10-Q filing that was first reported by the Philadelphia Inquirer

RELATED: Comcast seeks $153M damages award in patent fight with Sprint

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Sprint filed suit against Comcast in a Kansas federal court in 2011, claiming that Comcast had violated 12 patents with its Xfinity internet voice service. 

Sprint said in its complaint that company engineer Joe Christie developed the core technology for internet-based phone service in the 1990s, with Sprint eventually developing about 120 patents around Christie’s work. 

Over the last decade, Overland Park, Kansas-based Sprint has aggressively gone after a number of companies alleged to have violated these patents. Sprint was awarded $69.5 million by a Kansas jury in 2007 in a dispute with Vonage Holdings, for example.

Sprint also successfully sued several smaller competitors—Missouri’s Big River Telephone Co., for example—before winning a $139.8 million Kansas jury verdict over the erstwhile Time Warner Cable in March. 

For its part, Comcast has not commented on the settlement. 

For Comcast and Sprint, the settlement marks but one outcome in a never-ending stream of patent disputes. Comcast is currently trying to get a Pennsylvania court to up its award from $1.5 million to $153 million in a dispute with Sprint over text messaging patents. 

In 2014, it was Comcast that prevailed in a Delaware court over Sprint, winning a $7.5 million award in another dispute over VoIP patents. 

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