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Judge rules Samsung did not wilfully infringe on Apple patents

30 January, 2013 Apple



In the document filed with the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California, Judge Koh found that Samsung did not act willfully in infringing on Apple's patents, denying the Cupertino company a chance to triple damages associated with the suit.


The jurist granted Apple's motion that sought judgment as a matter of law to invalidate two claims of Samsung's U.S. Patent No. 7,675,941 for wireless data packet technology and denied five others:


  • DENIES Apple's motion for judgment as a matter of law that Apple's unregistered iPad/iPad 2 trade dress is protectable, infringed, and diluted;
  • DENIES Apple's motion for judgment as a matter of law that the Galaxy Tab 10.1 infringes the D'889 Patent;
  • DENIES Apple's motion for judgment as a matter of law that all accused Samsung phones infringe or dilute all Apple's intellectual property as asserted, and that all acts of infringement or dilution by accused Samsung phones and tablets were willful and induced by SEC;
  • DENIES Apple's motion for judgment as a matter of law that the '893, '711, '460, and '516 Patents are invalid; and
  • DENIES Apple's motion for judgment as a matter of law that Samsung is liable to Apple for breach of contract and antitrust violations stemming from breach of the ETSI IPR Policy.


Apple and Samsung's legal battles in this case began a little over a year ago, and went to trial in August of 2012. A nine-member jury then awarded Apple $1.05 billion, and because the jury ruled the infringement was wilful, the monetary damages could have tripled in post trial deliberations based on US Laws. At a post trial hearing in December, Koh heard arguments from each party as to whether the damages were appropriate, if any of Samsung's products should be banned for sale in the US, and if the jury decision should be thrown out. Although the jury originally ruled heavily in Apple's favour, Judge Koh's post trial decisions have lessened damages for Samsung.


In addition to addressing wilful infringement in the ruling of the 29 January, Samsung's motion for a new trial was denied, and Judge Koh ruled Apple would not be getting three times its originally awarded damages amount.


"Given that Apple has not clearly shown how it has in fact been undercompensated for the losses it has suffered due to Samsung's dilution of its trade dress, this Court, in its discretion, does not find a damages enhancement to be appropriate," Judge Koh wrote.


She explained that Apple delivered an inconsistent argument, first claiming money could not compensate Apple for the harm it had been dealt by Samsung's actions, then requesting $400 million in compensation.


On whether Apple's unregistered iPad and iPad 2 trade dress are protectable, Judge Koh sided with the jury and found no infringement or dilution from Samsung.


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