tuesday, 11 february of 2014

Samsung denied retrial in patent dispute with Apple


Samsung denied retrial in patent dispute with Apple

Judge Lucy Koh of the US District Court for the Northern District of California on Friday issued an order denying a request by Samsung for a retrial in its patent dispute with Apple, meaning that the award of $290 million in damages will stand. In the order Koh also chastised Apple for its closing arguments to the jury, which highlighted Samsung's "foreignness" and reflected what Koh referred to as a "troubling" American-versus-non-American theme. Part of Samsung's request for a retrial was grounded on these arguments, which Samsung's lawyers claimed unfairly invoked racial and national biases in Apple's favor.

Though ultimately denying a retrial the order also expressed concern over whether American juries are capable of fairly adjudicating patent disputes between domestic and foreign companies. Koh referred to a study finding a large discrepancy between foreign and domestic companies' patent-infringement lawsuit success rates in jury trials. However, Koh found that Apple's misconduct was not substantial enough to warrant a retrial on that basis alone. Samsung was already granted one retrial in this case, which began in August 2012, that case resulted in Apple being awarded nearly half a billion dollars. In the retrial, which ended in November 2013, Koh reduced the award to the current amount, $290 million, claiming that the first jury had erred in calculating damages.

Samsung and Apple have had numerous disputes over intellectual property in judicial forums all over the globe. The success of either party has also varied with the forum. In August 2013, the International Trade Commission, a US body, found that Samsung had violated patents held by Apple relating to movement tracking on touchscreen devices. In July, a Japanese court found in favor of Samsung in a patent dispute over media-synching software. The parties are currently in another dispute before Koh relating to alleged infringement of "word reccomendation" technology; that dispute is scheduled to go before a jury in March.

(Published by Jurist – February 10, 2014)

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