Apple Inc and Samsung Electronics Co Ltd finally settled a seven-year patent dispute over Apple’s claim that Samsung infringed is patents by “slavishly” copying the design of the iPhone.
The terms of the settlement; filed in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California on Wednesday, were not available.
In May, a U.S. jury ordered Samsung to pay $539 million to Apple, after previously paying $399 million in damages for copying the features of the original iPhone.
If the verdict is upheld, that’s an additional payment of nearly $140 million Apple would receive from their South Korean competitor.
An Apple spokesman said that Apple “cares deeply about design” and that “this case has always been about more than money” but refused to comment on the terms of Wednesday’s settlement. A Samsung spokeswoman also refused to comment.
Samsung appealed to the U.S. Supreme Court after a loss at trial and in December 2016, the court unanimously sided with Samsung’s argument; damages should be limited since patent infringement only involved certain features like the screen that displays icons in a grid.
However, the jury sided with Apple’s arguments when the case went back to lower court for trial this year. They agreed that in this specific case, Samsung’s profits were attributable to the design elements that infringed Apple’s patents.
According to Michael Risch, a professor of patent law at Villanova University, there is no clear winner in the dispute, which involved hefty legal fees for both companies.
While Apple scored a major public relations victory with an initial $1 billion verdict in 2012, Samsung also obtained rulings in its favor and avoided an injunction that would have blocked it from selling phones in the U.S. market, Risch said.
By: Clara Doku/Techvoiceafrica.com