A jury ruled last month that Samsung infringed Apple smartphone patents and awarded $120 million in damages. The verdict in the latest lawsuit involving the two tech giants came in federal court in San Jose. The jury also ruled that Apple infringed Samsung patents and awarded $158,000 in damages. Apple Inc. had sought $2.2 billion after accusing Samsung Electronics Co. of infringing five of its patents covering functions such as slide-to-lock, universal searching, quick linking, automatic word correction and background syncing. Samsung had sought $6 million claiming that Apple had infringed two of its smartphone patents related to camera use and video transmission.
The verdict marked the latest intellectual property battle between the world’s top two smartphone makers. It appears that Apple and Samsung have sued each other in courts and trade offices around the world. Two years ago, a separate jury ordered Samsung to pay Apple $930 million after finding it had used Apple technology to create older generation devices. Samsung is appealing that order.
The lawsuits were filed as Apple and Samsung are locked in a bitter struggle for dominance of the $330 billion worldwide smartphone market. Samsung has become the leader of the sector with a 31 percent share after being an also-ran with just 5 percent in 2007. Apple, meanwhile, has seen its market share slip to about 15 percent from a high of 27 percent three years ago.
During the lengthy trial that ended with the verdict, Apple argued that many of the key functions and vital features of Samsung phones were invented by Apple. Samsung countered that its phones operate on the Google Android software system and that any legal complaint Apple has is not with them, but with the search giant. For that reason, much of the testimony focused on Google. Even though the search giant wasn’t a party to the case, Samsung argued in court that Google and its Android software were the real targets of Apple.
It was reported that more than 70 percent of smartphones run on Android, a mobile operating system that Google Inc. has given out for free to Samsung and other phone makers. Google entered the smartphone market while its then-CEO Eric Schmidt was on Apple’s board. Obviously, that move didn’t sit well with Apple co-founder Steve Jobs. He was said to consider Android to be a blatant rip-off of iPhone innovations. After removing Schmidt from Apple’s board, reportedly, Jobs vowed that Apple would resort to “thermonuclear war” to destroy Android and its allies. During the recent trial, lawyers for Samsung produced an email Jobs sent to executives in 2010 urging them to wage a “holy war” against Android in 2011.
Source: Claims Journal
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