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Apple Hit with Massive Patent Fine

Apple Inc. has lost a patent lawsuit over the processor in some of its iPhone models. Shown here is the iPhone 6S Plus.

Apple Inc. could end up paying $862 million in damages after losing a patent lawsuit over its processors.

The processors, which are found in the iPhone 5S, 6 and 6 Plus models, were found Tuesday to have infringed on a 1998 patent held by the University of Wisconsin-Madison's licensing arm.

The patent is believed to improve the efficiency of processors.

In January 2014, the Wisconsin Alumni Research Foundation (WARF), which licenses technological inventions created by university researchers, claimed Apple willfully infringed on the patents.

The foundation said it had approached Apple to license the patent, but was ignored. Licensing the patent would have meant the computer giant would have to pay a fee to the university.

Apple tried to claim that the patent was invalid, but a jury in Madison, Wisconsin, thought otherwise.

The foundation has also filed suit against Apple for the next generation of its processors, found in the latest iPhones and iPads.

This kind of lawsuit is not new for WARF.

In 2008, it sued Intel Corp. over the same patent. The case was settled, but the damages were not disclosed.