June 21, 2012
Apple’s Global Legal Battles: Samsung V Apple 3G
Michael Harper for redOrbit.com
There´s been a new development in the on-going struggle between the world´s largest smartphone manufacturers as Samsung won a ruling over Apple on a 3G patent in a Dutch court. To the victor goes the spoils, and Samsung will begin to seek damages from Apple after this victory.
According to the Dutch site All About Phones, Samsung has already released a statement, saying: "Samsung welcomes the decision of the court in The Hague, which again confirms that Apple makes free use of our technological innovations. In accordance with this statement, we will recover adequate damages that Apple and its products have caused."
This court battle is just one of many all over the world as both companies fight to gain control over fast-growing smartphone and tablet markets. To those out of the loop, Apple has accused Samsung of “slavishly copying” their iPad and iPhone designs, then running Google´s Android on the resulting devices. Samsung fired back with claims that Apple has been violating one of their patents regarding how devices connect to the internet via 3G.
Now, a court in The Hague, The Netherlands has ruled Apple´s iPhone 3G, 3GS and 4, as well as the iPad 1 and 2 have violated these patents. The resulting damages will be based on sales of these devices in the Netherlands dating back to August 4, 2010. This date, according to the court, is the proverbial age of accountability for Apple, saying they should have been aware they were infringing on these patents on this date.
While Samsung is entitled to seek damages for this patent infringement, the patent is classified as FRAND, (or Fair, Reasonable, and Non-discriminatory) meaning the patent is more or less necessary in all devices. Therefore, Samsung cannot seek a ban of Apple´s iDevices in The Netherlands.
According to CNET, not content with this victory, Samsung has also said they will continue to fight and defend their innovations and intellectual property, putting a halt to "Apple's free-riding of our technology."
Apple has, of course, yet to comment on this recent development.
Apple and Samsung are set to battle it out on American soil on July 30th in San Jose, California.
Elsewhere in Apple´s legal proceedings, the iPhone maker will attempt to salvage what they can in their lawsuit against Google´s Motorola. Last week, Federal Judge Richard Posner finally decided the two companies could bring their complaints to him as both are seeking injunctions against one another.
Apple gets to take the first crack at this case, as Judge Posner will hear their arguments on why he should allow an injunction against some Motorola smartphones. During some pretrial meetings, Posner had eliminated nearly every complaint Motorola´s patent claims against Apple while he upheld more of Apple´s claims against the Google´s Motorola.
According to Reuters, the trial was set to begin last week, though Judge Posner had canceled the trial earlier in the month, saying neither company had sufficient evidence and that such injunctions would be “contrary to public interest.”
A successful trial against Motorola could have positive effects on their trials elsewhere as well as give them better leverage in any future cross-licensing deals.