Apple wins appeal, $120 mn award from Samsung restored

Apple's lawsuit contends that Samsung infringed on patents for "slide to unlock" and autocorrection, among others
Apple's lawsuit contends that Samsung infringed on patents for "slide to unlock" and autocorrection, among others

A US appeals court on Friday handed Apple a victory in one of its battles with rival Samsung, reinstating a $119.6 million verdict for the iPhone maker for patent infringement.

In the latest twist in a series of patent cases between the smartphone giants, the Federal Circuit Appeals judges ruled 8-3 in a rehearing of the case, reversing a panel of the same court in February.

Apple's lawsuit contends that Samsung infringed on patents for "slide to unlock" and autocorrection, among others.

Friday's ruling said Samsung failed to prove that some of the Apple innovations were "obvious" and thus not able to be patented.

The opinion also said the court must defer to the decision of the jury when in doubt.

"Even in cases in which a court concludes that a reasonable jury could have found some facts differently, the verdict must be sustained if it is supported by substantial evidence on the record that was before the jury," Judge Kimberly Moore wrote for the majority.

Apple asked for an "en banc" rehearing of the case—before all the judges—following February's decision to toss out the award.

Apple had sought some $2.2 billion at trial, only to have a jury award the California-based company $119.6 million.

In February, the panel of judges ruled that Samsung did not infringe on one of the Apple patents and that the remaining two, which involved auto-correct and slide-to-unlock features, were not valid.

Neither company responded to requests for comment.

The case is separate from another suit in which Samsung was ordered to pay $548 million for to Apple and whose appeal is set for a hearing next week in the US Supreme Court

Samsung and Apple decided in 2014 to drop all patent disputes outside the United States, marking a partial ceasefire in a seemingly relentless legal war between the world's two largest smartphone makers.

The companies have battled in close to a dozen countries, with each accusing the other of infringing on various patents related to their flagship smartphone and tablet products.

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© 2016 AFP

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User comments

Oct 07, 2016
It's all about the money. If its decided in an american court, its in favour of Apple. If it's in any other court the decision goes to Samsung. So who's surprised.

Oct 08, 2016
It also relates to questionable patent issuing, when you can patent things like an unlock of a screen by sliding over it... especially a touch screen. I used to unlock my instrument case by sliding a slider. Visualizing something like that an making the slider the whole screen is hardly something you should be able to patent. Is there a patent war between game producers. They certainly create zillions new virtualization of everyday functions.

Sham on apple! They should concentrate on their increasingly disappointed fan-base instead of copying and patenting and suing.

And Samsung should get better or smarter layers...

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