It is a somewhat bittersweet victory for Apple in its current patent infringement suit against Samsung. Although the jury has found Samsung guilty to some extent, it is only telling the Korean manufacturer to pay $119.6 million, which is pennies compared to the $2.2 billion that Apple was originally asking for.
The total amount, however, might still go a bit above $120 million, though not excessively so. According to Apple’s lawyers, the jury failed to compute damages for patent ‘172. However, the jury decided to reschedule deliberations for Monday. It wasn’t a landslide victory for Apple, unlike the previous patent case that only ended last year. Patent infringement was determined in some devices piecemeal, and in some cases, none at all. All of Samsung’s devices have been cleared of the “quick links” patent ‘647 and the “unified search” patent ‘959. Only a number were found to have infringed on the “slide to unlock” patent ‘721 and the “autocomplete” ‘172 patent was already determined by presiding judge Lucy Koh as having been infringed.
In a somewhat surprising turn of events, Apple was also found guilty of infringing on one Samsung patent that the manufacturer brought to the court. It is quite interesting because this it the first time Apple was found to have infringed on a non-Standard Essential Patent or SEP, which refers to a class of patents that are needed in order to comply with international technical standards. For this infringement, Apple will have to pay Samsung $158,000, which is somewhat a laughable sum even compared to the $119.6 million to be awarded to Apple.
Naturally, the court of public, and sometimes even professional, opinion is divided on the matter. Some believe that although legally victorious, Apple has ended up losing much of its credibility, first by only winning some patents and being awarded around 5.5 percent of the amount it was asking for, and second for actually being found guilty of infringing as well. There are, however, those who hold that Apple was never expecting to be awarded the total amount anyway. Aim high but expect low, so to speak. Also, they say that, at the end of the day, Samsung was once again found guilty of copying Apple and that this case can be used by Cupertino as legal precedent in the future. We are definitely not yet at the end of this current courtroom drama, as the two will still be dishing it out for injunctions and appeals.