Sometimes these lawsuits do make it to court, like in the case of Apple in the UK who was sued by Optis Cellular Technology and lost, in which they are now facing $7 billion in damages owed. Now obviously Apple can pay that amount, but it is still a huge amount and we imagine that this is something the company probably wants to avoid paying if possible, even if it means threatening to exit the UK market.
This is because it seems that should Apple leave the UK market, they will not be on the hook for the damages that they might need to pay. While some, such as Mr. Justice Meade, have expressed their skepticism that Apple would exit the UK market over this, Apple’s legal representation, Marie Demetriou, suggested that they might not have a choice if it becomes “commercially unacceptable”.
According to Demetriou, “I am not sure that is right… Apple’s position is it should indeed be able to reflect on the terms and decide whether commercially it is right to accept them or to leave the UK market. There may be terms that are set by the court which are just commercially unacceptable.”
Of course, whether or not the company does decide to leave remains to be seen and it’s not a decision that they would make lightly given all the ramifications, but it is quite a bold threat to make.