Case Study: Apple’s lawsuit on Samsung, what happened?
The jury in the much-hyped Apple vs. Samsung patent infringement lawsuit recently handed down a verdict which basically gave Apple everything it wanted: A billion-dollar payment from Samsung, plus the possibility of an injunction against sales of infringing Samsung smart phones and tablets. Will this mega-lawsuit dramatically alter the way our devices are manufactured and, in turn, affect our decision-making process when buying a smart phone for personal or business use? Probably not. The New York Times predicted that this decision would wreak design havoc in the mobile device landscape: "Consumers could end up with some welcome diversity in phone and tablet design -- or they may be stuck with devices that manufacturers have clumsily revamped to avoid crossing Apple.” The real outcome of the Apple vs. Samsung lawsuit is likely to be more lawsuits. And perhaps higher prices for non-Apple smart phones. But in the long run, I suspect the effects of this case will be negligible to consumers and business users of mobile devices. Patent expert Thomas Frey of the Louisville, Colo.-based think tank the DaVinci Institute explains, "This is gamesmanship, it's all moving queens and rooks around the chessboard. In the end the legalities won't matter. All the solutions will be off the chessboard. The players will say to each other: 'If you pay me $X, I'll say you win.'" The recent decision will likely be appealed, and it's possible that it may be struck down. But even if the decision stands, it's more likely that Samsung and all Android device makers will keep doing business mainly as usual. Electronics manufacturers, especially mobile device makers, license patented technologies from each other all the time, for a fee. For instance, after a patent "misunderstanding” last year, Apple started paying Nokia an estimated $11.50 for every iPhone sold. Similarly, in a settlement agreement last year, Samsung agreed to pay Microsoft $10 to $15 for each smart phone or tablet it sells. In the U.S. market, the vast majority of smart phones are at a price heavily subsidized by wireless carriers, along with a two-year service contract -- which further obscures the effect of licensing fees on phone prices. So, for smartphone users, the changes likely won't be too noticeable and infringement lawsuits probably won't factor into their buying decisions. The components of the lawsuit
After a year of scorched-earth litigation, a jury decided Friday that Samsung ripped off the innovative technology used by Apple to create its revolutionary iPhone and iPad. The jury ordered Samsung to pay Apple $1.05 billion. An appeal is expected. Apple Inc. filed its patent infringement lawsuit in April 2011 and engaged legions of the country's highest-paid patent lawyers to demand $2.5 billion from its top smartphone competitor. Samsung Electronics Co. fired back with its own lawsuit seeking $399 million. But verdict, however, belonged to Apple, as the jury rejected all Samsung's claim against Apple. Jurors also decided against some of Apple's claims involving the two dozen Samsung devices at issue, declining to award the full $2.5 billion Apple demanded. However, the jury found that several Samsung products illegally used such Apple creations as the "bounce-back" feature when a user scrolls to an end image, and the ability to zoom text with a finger tap. Breaking down the verdict
As part of its lawsuit, Apple also demanded that Samsung pull its most popular cell phones and computer tablets from the U.S. market. A judge was expected to make that ruling at a later time. During closing arguments at the trial, Apple attorney Harold McElhinny claimed Samsung was having a "crisis of design" after the 2007 launch of the iPhone, and executives with the South Korean company were determined to illegally cash in on the success of the revolutionary device. Samsung's lawyers countered that it was simply and legally giving...
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