Samsung Doesn’t Have to Pay Apple Attorney Fees Because iPhone wasn’t Famous

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Apple's bid to make Samsung pay US$16 million for attorney fees it racked up in the 2012 trial accusing the electronics maker of copying the iPhone's design was shot down by Federal Judge Lucy Koh this week. The Judge said one of the reasons Samsung doesn't need to cover Apple's attorney costs was because the iPhone's design wasn't famous before the copycat devices were made.

Judge Koh says Samsung doesn't have to pay Apple's legal fees in 2012 patent infringement fightJudge Koh says Samsung doesn't have to pay Apple's legal fees in 2012 patent infringement fight

Apple and Samsung' epic 2012 patent infringement court battle ended with a Federal Jury saying Samsung infringed on a long list of iPhone and iPad design patents, while Apple didn't infringe on any of Samsung's. Apple was awarded over $900 million in damages that hasn't been paid yet because Samsung appealed the ruling.

Apple followed up by asking the court to shift its legal expenses to Samsung, but Judge Koh said that even though the company was found to willfully copy the iPhone and iPad look, that wasn't enough to add Apple's attorney bill to their payout. She said that along with willfully copying Apple's designs, Samsung needed to show some form of bad faith, too.

Even though there was evidence to to support Apple's argument, the question about whether or not the iPhone's look was already well known when Samsung copied it was enough to convince Judge Koh to deny the payment request. "The fact that the court found the famousness of Apple's trade dresses to be 'a close question' is, by itself, sufficient for the court to deny Apple's motion for attorneys' fees," she said, according to The Recorder.

For Apple, the ruling is just salt in the wound, but for Samsung, it's yet another point it can use in the future to help back up its argument that the Galaxy smartphone lineup evolved independently and only coincidentally looks like the iPhone.

Apple hasn't commented on Judge Koh's ruling.

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Apple's 2012 patent infringement win against Samsung is looking more like a hollow victory every day.



Willfully copying designs isn’t itself acting in bad faith?

Jeff Gamet

Apparently not, although it sure looks like a bad faith move to me.

Lee Dronick


Dorkus Maximus

Maybe the judge would like to award Samsung a few million $$ for having the foresight to copy Apple’s design before it became a global standard.


This is not uncommon at all. Patents are not supposed to stem creativity and just because you file a patent doesn’t mean you get to put it in a drawer and take it out whenever you want. Many times people show up with prior patents and get shot down because they weren’t first to market or weren’t a major player. Apple has been found to infringe on patents and they have both lost and won on their own infringement cases. Apple should give up the ghost and stop whining as Samsung and the rest have pulled ahead of that ancient iPod form factor that Apple still uses for phones anyway.


Gee, I guess Apple’s whining won them a billion dollars. And a jury of folks who were capable of rational thinking actually gave it to them. Imagine that. When Apple’s 4 inch screen iPhone 5s with its “ancient form factor” took the top spot as the largest selling smartphone on the planet months ago, Samsung responded with their usual panic-release, replete with a fingerprint sensor. Innovative. And to Samsung’s great joy and satisfaction, if “joy and satisfaction” meant “it didn’t sell enough to put them back in first place,” they began doing the most entertaining spin we’ve seen in a while. Guess all that “pulling ahead” just didn’t work. Golly, they really do need to stop whining.


Really? When Apple catches up to a thinner, lighter phone with a higher res screen, NFC, connectivity,  much longer battery life and an arguably superior and FREE OS well, good luck pal. I’m still waiting for Apple to have answer to the Nexus 7 and they have NOTHING.Til then Apple looks like pathetic vindictive wimps suing like jerks over ancient crap that Samsung doesn’t even use on any current phones.


That’s spot on. Apple has so much catching up to do. It’s true. Ask every high school kid. They know that it’s Android and their cell phone manufacturers that really rock!  The dilemma for Cupertino is how much time will they allow themselves to languish in the unenviable position as the most valued corporation on Earth before they get off their butts and start moving into the 21st century. And boy do you have your finger on the pulse of Samsung’s endless persecution by “pathetic vindictive wimps” and “jerks” . Would you believe that other “pathetic wimp” that could also be referred to as “jerk,”—Microsoft—has also recently sued Samsung for non-payment of patent fees? It’s almost as if these money-grabbing hucksters think that someone who uses their patented software should pay up. Wimpy, pathetic jerks. Jerky, pathetic wimps. And in the next 3 months, as Apple—those whiners—sell millions and millions of iPhone6’s, they’ll have to live with the fact that they didn’t have the answer the to the Nexus 7, even though they knew that it was going to be on the test. Ancient crap makers.


Burns me every time I shell out money for iOS updates. What are Apple thinking?!?!


Anyone notice than when a decision regarding Samsung’s infringements goes to a jury, Apple wins, but when the decision is rendered by Judge Koh, Apple loses?


So they are very successful at selling sugar water - I mean the same old phone over and over, so what? General Motors sells a lot of cars, too but that doesn’t take away from the fact they are crap and that thousands have been re-called to to killing people. Get over it. You sound like sore losers.


“General Motors (Samsung) sells a lot of cars (smartphones) too but that doesn’t take away from the fact they are crap and thousands have been re-called to to (sic) killing people.”

Well, that jury is still out, but I’m pretty sure Samsung hasn’t been tried for murder. Yet.

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