It looks like Samsung might just wiggle its way out of the $399 million fine it was ordered to pay to Apple after a lengthy patent dispute case, though it won’t get out entirely unscathed. Many of you will have likely heard about Apple’s lawsuit against Samsung, in which Apple argued that it owned a patent for a rectangular smartphone with rounded edges. After years and years of court proceedings, eventually a jury ruled against Samsung. However, after making its case to the Supreme Court in the US, it looks like the fine is going to be reassessed.
The Supreme Court’s unanimous ruling saw eight justices throw out the appeals court ruling that ordered Samsung to pay $399 million to Apple. To be clear, the original ruling that Samsung infringed on Apple’s design patents still stands. However, the $399 million fine has been reversed, meaning a lower-level court will need to reassess the case and come up with a more suitable fine.
Image Source: Supreme Court.
Samsung’s defence to the Supreme Court argued that the fine was unfair as it was based on all profits made selling infringing devices. However, design is just one element of a smartphone and not the sole contributing factor to sales, so the fine should be recalculated based on a percentage of the profits made, rather than the whole amount.
So now the case has been sent back to lower court for further proceedings. We should hear a revised order at some point in 2017.
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KitGuru Says: While the Supreme Court didn’t put an end to this case entirely, it has given Samsung the opportunity to lessen the blow a bit one more time. Hopefully once the revised ruling comes through, we won’t have to hear about this particular lawsuit ever again.