The seemingly eternal battle between Samsung and Apple is one which more recently looked to be coming to some sort of closure. At least, in terms of the now infamous ‘patent wars’ that the two have been enduring over recent times. While, the two companies have agreed to disagree on the multiple patents they were suing and counter-suing each other over, outside of the U.S, they did proceed with a couple within the U.S. Of which, the latest was reported last week that Samsung had agreed to pay Apple a sum of about $548 million.
Well, on the back of that agreement, Samsung has now filed an appeal in the Supreme Court over the case. Although, this is not exactly your typical Supreme Court Appeal. Instead of outright appealing the judgement or the fine (although that is the purpose of the appeal), Samsung is looking to bring about a fundamental change to the way in which patent cases are heard in court in general. Drawing on the Apple case as example, Samsung notes that jurors are not informed enough to be able to make such patent decisions and in particular, jurors are not given enough understanding to be able to interpret design patents, which are far removed from utility patents which do highlight an obvious function and therefore, an obvious infringement of that function can be established. Further still, Samsung also uses the current patent appeal to bring forward the issue of how patent damages are allocated. Using the basis that if patent damages equate automatically to profits raised from use of an infringed patent, then multiple patent infringements could be theoretically used to recoup multiple factors of the original money made. In short, more than would be made from breaching a patent in the first place.
In term of why Samsung has taken this specific approach to appealing, Samsung claims that they believe this to be an issue of innovation. In a statement given by the company, Samsung said “If the current legal precedent stands, it could diminish innovation, stifle competition, pave the way for design patent troll litigation and negatively impact the economy and consumers.” Of course, establishing a cause for re-evaluating the way in which patents are discussed in court, will benefit Samsung in the current case they are involved with Apple. Those interested, can read the full Supreme Court appeal by heading through the source link below.