Print 124 comment(s) - last by nafhan.. on Aug 27 at 4:41 PM

Want to guess which company is breaking out the champagne tonight?

The jury reached a verdict today and they found Samsung guilty on multiple counts of infringing upon Apple design and software patents. While Apple was able to hold Samsung's feet to the fire on the majority of its utility patents, Samsung received no love from the jurors on its countersuit claims.
The jury ordered Samsung to pay Apple $1,051,855,000 USD ($1.05B USD) in damages. Apple owes Samsung absolutely nothing.

Apple CEO Tim Cook [Image Source: Paul Sakuma, Associated Press]

Not surprisingly, both Apple and Samsung have issued statements to the New York Times regarding the decision. First up, Apple:
We are grateful to the jury for their service and for investing the time to listen to our story and we were thrilled to be able to finally tell it. The mountain of evidence presented during the trail showed that Samsung’s copying went far deeper than even we knew. The lawsuits between Apple and Samsung were about much more than patents or money. They were about values. At Apple, we value originality and innovation and pour our lives into making the best products on earth. We make these products to delight our customers, not for our competitors to flagrantly copy. We applaud the court for finding Samsung’s behavior willful and for sending a loud and clear message that stealing isn’t right.
And now we have Samsung, which is clearly not pleased with the outcome of this case:
Today’s verdict should not be viewed as a win for Apple, but as a loss for the American consumer. It will lead to fewer choices, less innovation, and potentially higher prices. It is unfortunate that patent law can be manipulated to give one company a monopoly over rectangles with rounded corners, or technology that is being improved every day by Samsung and other companies. Consumers have the right to choices, and they know what they are buying when they purchase Samsung products. This is not the final word in this case or in battles being waged in courts and tribunals around the world, some of which have already rejected many of Apple’s claims. Samsung will continue to innovate and offer choices for the consumer.
And even though Microsoft had absolutely nothing to do with this trial (Microsoft can safely sit on the sidelines as a spectator), Bill Cox, senior director of Marketing Communications for Windows Phone, added his two cents in on the decision:

Considering Microsoft’s current position in the smartphone marketplace, we’re not quite sure it's “winning” in this case.

Updated 8/25/2012 @ 2:53am EST
9to5Mac has received an internal memo sent to Apple employees by Apple CEO Tim Cook. In the memo, which features similar wording to the statement issued by Apple after the ruling, Cook describes how taking Samsung to court wasn't about the "patents or money":

Today was an important day for Apple and for innovators everywhere.
Many of you have been closely following the trial against Samsung in San Jose for the past few weeks. We chose legal action very reluctantly and only after repeatedly asking Samsung to stop copying our work. For us this lawsuit has always been about something much more important than patents or money. It’s about values. We value originality and innovation and pour our lives into making the best products on earth. And we do this to delight our customers, not for competitors to flagrantly copy.
We owe a debt of gratitude to the jury who invested their time in listening to our story. We were thrilled to finally have the opportunity to tell it. The mountain of evidence presented during the trial showed that Samsung’s copying went far deeper than we knew.
The jury has now spoken. We applaud them for finding Samsung’s behavior willful and for sending a loud and clear message that stealing isn’t right.
I am very proud of the work that each of you do.
Today, values have won and I hope the whole world listens.

Sources: The New York Times, Twitter

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RE: well
By KGBird on 8/24/2012 10:52:17 PM , Rating: 3
It's crazy that rounded corners can be patented. Every engineer should know that you avoid sharp edges because of the inherent stresses they generate that results in chipping or cracking. Sharp edges are also uncomfortable to the touch.
This was probably never presented in court because the jury would never understand that Apple has patented a standard practice.

Samsung should now charge Apple out the wazoo for the chips.

RE: well
By theapparition on 8/27/2012 10:24:03 AM , Rating: 3
It's crazy that rounded corners can be patented.

I'm just playing devil's advocate here, so don't get too upset.

Rounded corners can't be patented.
A rectangle can't be patented.
The color black can't be patented.
A chrome bezel can't be patented.
A center mounted screen can't be patented.

But you can get a design patent that says it's a black phone with a rectangular shape, with uniformly rounded corners, a chrome bezel and center mounted screen with one button. It protects the "look" of the product.

Personally, I don't believe any intelligent person can look at the phones and claim any sort of confusion. I also dismiss the claim that even if there was no confusion, a similarly looking phone caused loss of sales to Apple. But apparently, I'm not on any jury to make the determination.

Samsung should now charge Apple out the wazoo for the chips.

Can't for several reasons. They already have purchase agreements in place to the tune of 5 Billion. It would be a contract violation to break those agreements.
Most importantly, despite our personal opinions, business is business. You MUST act ethically within accepted business practices. If Samsung were to act petty and break those agreements, what other company would trust them as a supplier? They could risk their entire business by doing that.

RE: well
By nafhan on 8/27/2012 4:41:50 PM , Rating: 3
Yep. The big problem here is that there are BIG problems with IP law, and Apple's just the best at taking advantage of the flawed system. Unfortunately, thanks to rulings like this, I think issues with IP law are going to get worse before things get better. How bad they will get... I have no idea, but I do feel a bit worried.

"So, I think the same thing of the music industry. They can't say that they're losing money, you know what I'm saying. They just probably don't have the same surplus that they had." -- Wu-Tang Clan founder RZA

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