Apple Finally Wins Injunction in Samsung Patent Fight

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Apple finally won an injunction in its years-old patent infringement fight with Samsung on Monday. The ruling is a legal win for Apple, although it has little value in the retail space because it covers products Samsung no longer makes.

Apple finally scores permanent injunction in Samsung patent battleApple finally scores permanent injunction in Samsung patent battle

The ruling was issued by Northern District Court Judge Lucy Koh in California who has been overseeing the legal fight between the two companies. The three patents mentioned in the injunction include:

  • 5,946,647 - System and method for performing an action on a structure in computer-generated data
  • 8,046,721 - Unlocking a device by performing gestures on an unlock image
  • 8,074,172 - Method, system, and graphical user interface for providing word recommendations

The permanent injunction blocks Samsung from selling specific Admire, Nexus, and Stratosphere in the United States, which will have little impact on the company from a practical standpoint. Samsung now sells newer models that aren't named in the injunction that work around Apple's patents.

The injunction shows the iPhone and iPad maker is willing to stick it out in patent infringement fights and can win permanent injunctions. That's something other device makers will take note of when deciding whether or not to take on Apple in court.

Florian Mueller of FOSS Patents called with injunction a big win for Apple's legal team.

"They had been fighting for an injunction like this for several years. They had to deal with multiple setbacks," he said. "But ultimately they got an injunction (albeit one without business implications) over a set of features allegedly found in highly multifunctional devices."

The implication for other smartphone and tablet makers is that Apple can win injunctions related to a very focused set of features, or aspects of features, in what Mr. Mueller called "highly multi-function products."

In the end, Judge Koh's ruling doesn't mean retailers need to pull any Samsung devices from their shelves, and the average consumer won't even know an injunction is in place. In the courtroom, however, Apple has what it wanted for a long time: an injunction it can bring up in future potential patent infringement cases.

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Judge Koh's injunction doesn't even count as an annoyance to Samsung at this point; it's little more than a another tool Apple can toss into its legal toolbox.

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champagne time, yet? - well ...

(from another planet), CNET’s parallax skew on this: “In Apple patent spat, Samsung rides a new wave of support”
Facebook, Google and Dell are among many urging the Supreme Court to weigh in. High damages in patent cases, they say, could hurt everyone from large tech companies to farmers and consumers.
by Shara Tibken, Jan. 18, 2016

‘Samsung’s got some new friends in its legal battle against Apple—including farmers, African American small businesses and an electronics retailer… Legal experts, nonprofit organizations and technology companies have filed amicus, or “friend of the court,” briefs in support of Samsung, urging the US Supreme Court to consider the patent-infringement case. They want the nation’s highest court to better define design patents and limit the damages that can be awarded. And they’re using Apple v. Samsung as the case that hopefully gets the federal government to enact patent reforms, preventing so-called patent trolls from cashing in on intellectual property.
“This is a very important subject, and…it matters tremendously to our millions of customers,” Lee Cheng, chief legal officer of online electronics retailer Newegg, (which( submitted a brief along with Dell, eBay, Facebook, Google, Hewlett Packard Enterprise, HP, Vizio and software maker Pegasystems that said if the US doesn’t change its patent laws, the result ultimately will be less choice and higher cost for consumers.
“We are very strong supporters of the patent system,” Cheng said. “That said, there’s a huge and tremendous amount of abuse.”...’

‘... In all, six amicus briefs have been filed with the Supreme Court in support of Samsung. Along with Newegg and some of Silicon Valley’s biggest tech companies, other groups supporting Samsung included law professors from Stanford and Georgetown; nonprofit digital rights groups like Public Knowledge and the Electronic Frontier Foundation; and advocacy groups such as the Computer & Communications Industry Association, the Hispanic Leadership Fund and the National Black Chamber of Commerce… The federal circuit’s interpretation of patent rules “is greatly detrimental to the patent system and innovation in general, due to the potentially enormous disparity between damages award and patent value that the rule invites,” the brief filed by Public Knowledge and Electronic Frontier Foundation said. The two nonprofits are focused on preserving the openness of the Internet and protecting consumers in the digital world, respectively.
If the Supreme Court decides to take the case, its eventual decision could have a ripple effect on the technology industry and the kinds of gadgets you’ll be able to buy. Samsung and some of Silicon Valley’s biggest players have argued that the lower-court ruling as it stands may have a “devastating impact” on the introduction of new products because of a heightened fear of legal challenges. Apple said all along that it was doing what was necessary to defend its intellectual property and the value of its blockbuster iPhone franchise.’


“...hopefully gets the federal government to enact patent reforms, preventing so-called patent trolls from cashing in on intellectual property…”
”...hopefully gets the federal government to enact patent reforms, preventing so-called patent trolls  from cashing in on intellectual property…’,
so-called patent trolls”, such as Apple, you’re saying?

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