Editor in Chief
- Jan 5, 2011
It looks like the age old war between Apple and Samsung will finally be going the distance. You folks remember that "ancient history" right? Way back in 2011, Apple sued Samsung for a large number of patent infringements. Some of the accusations were probably legit, but quite a few were really silly (like suing for having rounded edges). The case dragged out over many years and dominated headlines for 2012 and 2013.
After a while it became just as exhausting to cover the story, as it was for our members to constantly read about it. It basically became the must-ignore story of the century, even after Apple "won" a landmark $1 Billion settlement. Samsung appealed several times, and eventually got the settlement reduced down to $548 million.
Apparently, that reduction still wasn't enough to satisfy Samsung's sense of justice. Samsung is appealing to the highest court in the United States, the Federal Supreme Court. They felt that the award of total profits from the sale of their products would basically be unjust. Samsung is seeking to pair back $399 Million of that final award agreement, claiming that the iPhone's bezel and colorful grid of icons, as well as the rounded-corner front face, only contributed marginally to a complex device.
Here's a quote with more of the specifics,
"Last May, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit in Washington upheld the 2012 patent infringement verdict. The court, however, said the iPhone's appearance could not be protected through trademarks, forcing another trial later this month in federal court in San Jose, California, to recalculate some of the damages Apple is owed.
The Supreme Court has not reviewed a design patent case in more than 120 years, when the products involved included a spoon handle and a rug.
In court papers, Samsung said that for complex, modern products such as smartphones, design patents have led to "unjustified windfalls," far beyond the inventive value of the patents.
On Monday, the high court said it would answer whether courts should award in damages the total profits from a product that infringes on a design patent if the patent applies only to a component of the product." ~ Reuters
Technically, Samsung already paid the $548 Million settlement to Apple. Samsung's court filing specified that it expects to be reimbursed by Apple if it wins this final, final appeal. It looks like this farce might be finally coming to a close. At least some meaningful legal precedents might be set from the whole debacle. One way or another, sometime this year, we will finally get to breathe a sigh of relief as this ends. What do you folks think?