Smartphone rivals Samsung and Apple have been locked in a vicious court battle over allegedly stolen patents. Morrison & Foerster partner Harold McElhinny, who once played the leading role for Apple, has retired and partner Rachel Krevans, who also represented the Cupertino, California-based company died past year.
Koh of the Northern District of California provided instructions to the jury - jury selection went until 5 p.m. Monday - Wilmer Cutler Pickering Hale & Dorr partner William Lee, who represents Apple Inc., kicked off arguments.
Without mentioning the Supreme Court's ruling explicitly, Samsung lawyer John Quinn emphasized the room the decision affords the company to argue damages should be based on the profits it made off the specific components that were found to infringe Apple patents - rather than the entire device. The jury is considering all the facts and thinking about what amount Samsung should pay for all the damages that it has caused to Apple.
The U.S. Supreme Court, which took up the Apple-Samsung patent fight in 2016 after a series of appeals, ruled on a narrow aspect of the case by finding juries and judges can look at discrete articles of manufacture, or components of a product, when assessing damages.
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This case will continue for months to come and the tech industry will certainly be watching closely to see what the court rules in this case that's going to set a big precedent for an industry where patent violation cases are a dime a dozen.
The fourth episode of this case revolves around clarifying the definition of 'article of manufacture', that is whether the contents of the patents apply to the whole phone. The design patents that Samsung infringed concern the physical shape that would become the iPhone, the bezel, and the colorful grid of icons. "Apple's design patents do not cover the entire phone". "Apple is certainly not entitled to the profits on the whole phone". "The praise was not just for what it could do, but for how it looked, it's innovative design". Seeing its market share dwindle and hoping to resurrect its flagging fortunes, Lee said, Samsung copied Apple's emphasis on design and watched as its sales soar once again. Expert Michael Wagner is expected to offer evidence of how much Apple spends on items such as screen glass to help calculate damages. This verdict has resulted that Samsung needs to give $930 million to Apple.
Apple and Samsung are headed back to court to continue their long-standing patent trial.