After a jury sided with Verizon in its patent-infringment case against it, Vonage told customers and investors not to worry, because it was developing a workaround that would allow it to continue operating without infringing upon any of the patents in question. However, the company has now confirmed that there is no such workaround, and it's not certain that one would be feasible, given the breadth of the Verizon patents. It's filing for a permanent stay of the injunction against it, apparently with the hope that the appeals process will work out in its favor. If that move isn't successful, it's going to be awfully hard for the company to stay in business. Seeing the stay denied would be a dream scenario for Verizon, since the patents in question are so broad that it's conceivable it could be impossible to run a landline-replacement VoIP service in the US without infringing upon them -- meaning it could shut down the entire US VoIP industry and the stiff competition it provides the company's traditional phone services. Verizon's not the only company rubbing its hands gleefully, either. The whole VoIP space is so patented up that it's under threat not just from entrenched rivals who would like to see its growth stymied, but by companies that have done little to bring their innovations to market and are looking to make a quick buck.
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