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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Apple's strategy going forward could be a disaster
By ptmmac on 8/24/2012 10:53:13 PM , Rating: 2
Apple has already offered a motion to get an injunction against sales of Samsung phones in the US that violate this ruling. I suspect that Apple already knows what Samsung is planning to do and that does not include settling this war before several more battles have been fought. I do not believe that it is in Apple's best interest to fight this to the bitter end. I may be naive, but I do believe that in the long run our system tends to get things like this right. I don't believe that Apple should take this ruling as carte blanche to ride over all the competition from Android. The other Android manufacturers have not as slavishly copied Apple. They are not going to be the easy target that Samsung has been. Apple needs competition and it does not need the distraction of legal wrangling to be it's primary business product.

I think it is worth noting that Samsung is more than just a copy cat. They make high quality products, especially components in cellphones, and they take pride in the quality of the products they make. Culturally, they do not "see" that copying the "best" in a competitors product is anything more than competition. Apple's management needs to do more than just dismiss Samsung as "Samesung". They need to realize that there are a lot of people, like the community here, who honestly believe we would be better off if Samsung could make their high quality knock offs. Many of those people feel that technology improvements and small businesses would benefit if IP rules made it much harder to obtain a patent. If you think that it is okay to download stolen software, music, or porn then you probably shouldn't be angry at Samsung. I actually think the price Samsung paid is in line with what should be reasonable for the actions they took. I don't think suing some kid for tens of thousands of dollars for downloading a few songs is reasonable. People that run servers that actively benefit from showing stolen products should be hit much harder. That is my view and it is pretty consistent with what I believe to be fair and reasonable.

Apple still needs Samsung to make the high quality parts that are used in the iPhone. There is an extensive class of patents which Samsung uses to make those products which Apple has been benefiting from. If you have been paying attention to the news you would realize that Apple has had big quality issues with the LG panels being used to build the new retina macbook pro. Apple should be willing to settle this dispute with Samsung without hanging all of their business on the results from this one case. One of the best bloggers on the web, Asymco's Horace Deidu, made the point that suing your competitor for IP infringements like this is not a good business plan. When pressed to comment on the odds of Apple winning this lawsuit Horace replied: "Again, I don’t have an opinion on legal matters. Broadly speaking, IP litigation is similar to playing the lottery." Apple has now made the point that it should not be copied directly and protected their intellectual property rights. The real question now is will Apple take the high road, and lock in the win they have made in this case and offer to cross license technology with their partner, Samsung. There is plenty of money to be made by both parties. The smartphone and tablet markets taken together is the largest market by gross product that has ever been conceived of. Hundreds of billions of Dollars of profits are on the table at this point. A simple effort to avoid infringing on each other's trade dress, and a cross license of all technical and software patents would be a huge win for both Apple and Samsung. Please remember that Apple never made any great products until they quit fighting Microsoft in court and put the heart and soul of the company into the effort to make new products for the "digital life"

By Helbore on 8/25/2012 9:53:47 AM , Rating: 2
The ball is in both of their courts. If Apple attempt to get a blanket ban on all of Samsung's smartphone products - as some think they will now do - then they wouldn't be offering much of an olive branch for Samsung to take.

If Apple want to end this war, they need to say to Samsung "pay the fine and we won't ban those products." Being that most of the ones found in infringement are last-gen anyway, it would seem pointless to pursue it.

They also need to not insist that Samsung pay royalties for licensing Apple patents, but attempt to put together a mutually-beneficial cross-licensing deal, in which both parties get access to the others patents.

That's the best way it can work. If all sides cross-license their patents, then we can get rid of all this legal stupidity and the consumers can get a range of products to choose from.

But it's down to all sides to play nice. My gut feeling is that neither side will and this will go on up to a higher court for review.

By Pneumothorax on 8/25/2012 10:07:43 AM , Rating: 2
All Samsung has to do is have a few 'fires' at a few of the factories that make the A5x (or whatever Samsung-manufactured CPU the iPhone 5 will use) and the LCD's the day after the iPhone 5 is released. That will do a nice number on Apple's stock price.

By elleehswon on 8/25/2012 11:08:18 AM , Rating: 2
rather that be blatant as that, just make sure the soc's have backdoors into them, which, when triggered, hard-brick the device.

By muhahaaha on 8/25/2012 11:23:32 AM , Rating: 2
your POSt is too long, the average reader will pass it by.

By ReloadAO on 8/25/2012 12:22:44 PM , Rating: 2
already passed :)

"When an individual makes a copy of a song for himself, I suppose we can say he stole a song." -- Sony BMG attorney Jennifer Pariser

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