Apple awarded $539m in landmark patent case against Samsung

Following five days of deliberations, a US jury on Thursday decreed that Samsung should pay Apple $539 million for infringing on patented smartphone features. 

The decision should be the closing stages of a years-long feud between the two huge tech firms who have been in and out of court over patents since 2011. 

Apple initially filed a lawsuit alleging that Samsung ‘slavishly’ copied its products for its smartphones and tablets. Samsung was found to be liable in a 2012 trial, with the just-resolved retrial ending any disagreements over the amount to be paid. 

Samsung had previously cashed out $399 million to  compensate Apple for infringing on some of the patents. Because of that credit, the verdict (if upheld on appeal) will see Samsung make an additional payment of nearly $140 million.

Apple said in a statement that it was pleased by the result, and that it wasn’t just about being compensated correctly.

“We believe deeply in the value of design,” Apple said in its statement. “This case has always been about more than money.”

Samsung says that it plans to retain ‘all options’ to contest the verdict.

“Today’s decision flies in the face of a unanimous Supreme Court ruling in favor of Samsung on the scope of design patent damages,” Samsung said in a statement. “We will consider all options to obtain an outcome that does not hinder creativity and fair competition for all companies and consumers.”

Samsung might be cross, but it has got off lightly compared with what Apple was initially after. The iPhone maker earlier this year told jurors that it was entitled to $1 billion in profits Samsung made from selling infringing phones, saying the iPhone’s design was crucial to their success.

The Korean company aimed to limit damages to about $28 million, arguing that it should only have to pay for profits attributable to the components that infringed on Apple patents. Jurors had initially awarded Apple $1.05 billion, but that was later reduced.

Samsung paid $548 million to Apple in December 2015, including $399 million for infringement of some of the patents at issue in this week’s trial.

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