The jury of the Apple v. Samsung copyright trial has made their decision, and it was a bloodbath. After a surprisingly short deliberation period yesterday, the nine-member jury ruled that Samsung had infringed on every one of Apple’s patents on nearly every device in question. Samsung has been ordered to pay Apple a whopping $1.049 billion for basing many of their phones off the iPhone’s design as well as copying many of Apple’s core features for touch-based designs.
Despite Samsung’s best efforts, the jury considered all of Apple’s patents, including those for touch-gestures like “tap-to-zoom” functionality and two-finger swiping gestures, to be legitimate. Many of the features in question have become industry standards, and it looks like Apple may now have the ammo to sue every major smartphone manufacturer out there over certain functions.
Though Apple is the undeniable winner of the trial, the jury didn’t rule in their favor on everything. They upheld Samsung’s own utility patents, which Apple asserted were invalid, and ruled that Samsung had not violated any antitrust laws or Universal Mobile Telecommunications System, or UMTS, agreements. It saved them some money, but it still seems like the smallest possible consolation prize.
More importantly, Apple’s non-patented design claims regarding the iPad and iPhone, like certain design features like the configuration of icons in their menu screen, and the appearance of the physical devices were not deemed “famous” or “protectable.” While the decision didn’t directly help Samsung all that much, the acknowledgement that certain aspects of tablet design have become standardized may be what keeps Android and Windows 8 tablets on the market.
Even so, Samsung still managed to escape the worst possible outcome. The total owed is less than half of what Apple wanted: The victorious iPhone-makers initially requested $2.5 billion for all the “trouble” Samsung caused.
- This might’ve been the last nail in the coffin for Samsung
- It may have been over before it began
- Maybe Samsung didn’t steal from Apple. Maybe they stole from this guy instead