It seemed minor at the time, but last year’s loss by Apple of a patent suit from VirnetX has cascaded into some serious problems for the FaceTime service.

Apple could have to face continuing royalty payments in the millions of dollars per month, and to comply, Apple has made some changes to FaceTime that are driving many users crazy. One report puts complaints at half a million.

Ars Technica reports that Apple has completely redesigned its backend architecture. But it’s impacting users in negative ways.

Apple support boards are filled with unhappy comments from FaceTime users. The changes Apple made means that point to point communications is lost, and calls are now going through relay servers. It’s not as reliable, and people are reporting everytihng from inability to connect to poor quality. Others are reporting FaceTime is working just fine.

VirnetX last month filed new papers with the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Texas seeking to add allegations that Apple, already a defendant in its currently-pending patent infringement lawsuit (VirnetX Inc. et al v. Apple Inc.), infringes a just granted patent for secure communications. The accused products in this lawsuit include the iPhone 5, iPod touch 5th Generation, iPad 4th Generation, iPad mini, and the latest Macintosh computers.

Apple FaceTime fix not working out for many unhappy users originally appeared on TUAW – The Unofficial Apple Weblog on Mon, 02 Sep 2013 10:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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