Patent battle: Apple and Samsung claim victory

Both Apple and Samsung Electronics claimed victory on Monday when a U.S. appeals court upheld a prior patent infringement verdict and threw out a trademark finding that iPhone appearance could be protected.

A Reuters report said the outcome of the global smartphone wars indicates that up to 40 percent of a $930 million verdict which had been won by Apple must be reconsidered. This will be a major relief for Samsung, the Korean electronics behemoth.

Interestingly, both Apple and Samsung welcomed the court ruling on Monday.

Apple said in a statement on Monday: “This is a victory for design and those who respect it.”

Samsung welcomed the court ruling regarding the trademark finding. “We remain confident that our products do not infringe on Apple’s design patents and other intellectual property, and we will continue to take all appropriate measures to protect our products,” said Samsung in a statement.

The Federal Circuit in Washington, D.C. upheld patent infringement violations including one which protects the shape and color of Apple iPhone as well as the damages awarded for those violations.

The Reuters report said the court ruling tilts in Apple’s favor, upholding the bulk of its damages award and reinforcing the principles of design that the company sued to advance, quoting said Brian Love, an assistant professor of law at the University of Santa Clara.

In 2012, the jury found Samsung violated several Apple patents including those related to iPhone’s design and appearance.
Apple was awarded $930 million in damages, but failed to win a ban on the sale of the infringing Samsung phones. The appeals court asked the court in San Jose to reconsider the $382 million portion awarded for trade dress dilution.

Since the 2012 trial, Samsung and Apple have mostly dropped their legal battles, except for another case pending in the same appeals court involving a $120 million verdict in 2014 for Apple on separate smartphone patents.

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