back to article Samsung v Apple: Titans await jury verdict on damages of MILLIONS

A jury will begin deciding today exactly how much money Samsung owes Apple for ripping off key elements of the iPhone. The two tech giants are squabbling because Apple wants its South Korean rival to hand over $380m for nicking features like the pinch-to-zoom command and the bounce-back scrolling feature. Samsung, on the other …

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  1. Brian Miller

    I'm shocked, shocked to find that ...

    "I was quite shocked," he said on Friday. "They went and copied the iPhone."

    Like Apple copied Xerox? Hello??

    1. Chris G Silver badge

      Re: I'm shocked, shocked to find that ...

      "I was quite shocked," he said on Friday. "They went and copied the iPhone."

      And seem to have found a way to reduce the price while using a different OS and offering more functions.

      1. PJI

        Re: I'm shocked, shocked to find that ...

        Reduce the price: of course. That's how copying works. Somebody else does the hard, expensive work of the initial design, market research, marketing and so forth. The copier does minor changes and exploits the market built up by the copied. I should hope that Samsung would be cheaper.

        It is distinctly unusual that the Macbook Air inspired laptops from other firms are not much cheaper than the MBA. That suggests that Apple spread a lot of the initial cost elsewhere, or the emulators are just milking that idea and market for all its worth.

        Since so many people seem to buy anything, whatever the price, merits or demerits, provided it is not Apple, I suppose they are on to something.

        1. Mark .

          Re: I'm shocked, shocked to find that ...

          "Somebody else does the hard, expensive work of the initial design, market research, marketing and so forth."

          Yep. Just like LG and HTC who released touchscreen phones in 2006, only to have it copied...

          "It is distinctly unusual that the Macbook Air inspired laptops from other firms are not much cheaper than the MBA."

          High end ultra-portables existed years before Apple joined that market. (MBA? Why do Apple fans always have to speak in acronyms that are meaningless to the rest of the world? Just call it a laptop.)

          And the innovation that makes these things possible and become more popular is the decreasing size and lower power usage of technology like CPUs (Intel), SSDs (Samsung), RAM (Samsung), as well as other innovations such as in displays (oh, Samsung again).

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: I'm shocked, shocked to find that ...

            As per usual 'Mark .', you are talking out of your arse.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      They are owed.....

      £2.34 to cover the cost of the stamp.

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      I know this'll bring on a world of hurt but ..

      Apple didn't 'copy' Xerox. They took ideas created by Xerox and turned them into products. Xerox invented the WIMP model but didn't commercialise it. I don't believe (but will accept correction) that Xerox patented the model so the only thing you can accuse Apple of, is not inventing the technology. I don't believe they ever claimed they did (again, corrections welcomed).

      Samsung on the other hand, literally copied the iphone. Samsung have sdmitted as much and if you doubt the extent, there's a nice slide (google it)showing what Samsung phones looked like before and after the iphone. It's remarkable.

      Even if we accept the argument that Apple 'copied'Xerox, how does that make it OK for Samsung to copy Apple ? Are you arguing unclean hands or is this just a childish 'well you did it first' rant.

      1. sisk Silver badge

        Re: I know this'll bring on a world of hurt but ..

        I would argue that many of the elements that Samsung copied shouldn't have been patentable in the first place. Rounded corners? Lock screens? Come on, these things are obvious.

        This whole thing, to me, reeks of same the kind of legal jiggery as when Miracle-Gro sued Terracycle for having green and yellow packaging.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: I know this'll bring on a world of hurt but ..

          You had better check your home to make sure that you have nothing that resembles a rectangle with rounded corners.. If you do, Apple might sue you.

        2. Philippe

          Re: I know this'll bring on a world of hurt but ..

          Pinch to zoom might have existed before but I had never seen it or used it until it came up in the iPhone.

          Yes it's obvious but beforehand it wasn't there and should be patentable. Meaning whoever use it should be paying royalties for a given time.

          Rounded corners however should be a copyright not a patent and yes it's a really stupid patent.

          Don't know what to think about lock screen though. .

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: I know this'll bring on a world of hurt but ..

            "Rounded corners however should be a copyright not a patent and yes it's a really stupid patent."

            A design patent (the infamous iPad shape) is not the same as a software patent (bounceback) or a patent for an engineering solution (air brakes for example). You would do well not to get confused, despite the confusing terminology. Other countries do not use the term "design patents" and thus avoid confusing the ignorant masses.

          2. Glostermeteor

            Re: I know this'll bring on a world of hurt but ..

            That's because the touch screen technology to do the pinch to zoom just wasnt there until the late 2000s. The release of the iPhone just coincided with the invention of capacitive touch technology. And Apple certainly didn't invent that.

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: I know this'll bring on a world of hurt but ..

        Xerox didn't invent WIMP. SRI invented WIMP, Xerox simply hired away all the SRI PhDs and staffers.

      3. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: I know this'll bring on a world of hurt but ..

        Samsung on the other hand, literally copied the iphone.

        Which was a copy of a Sony design, and there's a nice slide which shows that available via Google too.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: I know this'll bring on a world of hurt but ..

          IIRC, the so called "Jony" design to which you allude WAS NOT a Sony owned design. It was a design concept which Apple commissioned from a former Sony designer.

          You are an idiot.

      4. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: I know this'll bring on a world of hurt but ..

        Apple did COPY the mouse from XEROX and a number of other items from other computer companies. Like When ATARTI came out with the ST512/ST1024 with the Z8000 cpu Apple was still pushing Lisa with its B&W 10" screen. You're defending Apple copying Xerox with semantics. Even if Xerox did not commercialize the Wimp/Mouse they patented, used and designed it - Apple 'borrowing' it is COPYING.

        The Samsung phones are superior to the iPhone and it's kicking Apples butt in the market place. Plus you don't have to stand in line like you're in some former communist country waiting for bread or toilet paper.

        1. Snapper

          Re: I know this'll bring on a world of hurt but ..

          "Plus you don't have to stand in line like you're in some former communist country waiting for bread or toilet paper."

          Like socialist/communist Venezuela?

        2. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: I know this'll bring on a world of hurt but ..

          "Apple did COPY the mouse from XEROX ..." I'm sure Doug Engelbart would've had something to say about that.

      5. Glostermeteor

        Re: I know this'll bring on a world of hurt but ..

        Sorry to burst the Apple bubble, but lets get back to reality for a second. Apple's products were not revolutionary in their design at all, in fact I have an old touch screen device in my bedroom that does not look that dissimilar from an iPhone that I bought back in 2002, it's called a Palm (yeah remember those guys?). It's got a touch screen with rounded corners, not that dis-similar from the devices of today. So Apple just took that design made it better and put some clever marketing around it to make it sell, it wasn't revolutionary at all.

        Personally I think the judge should just throw out all patent claims whether they are made by Apple, Samsung, Google, Microsoft or whoever, since they are all based on patents filed and invented by other people, none of them deserve to have a monopoly on those ideas.

        And lets not get on to the fact that none of these companies would be in existence if it wasn't for inventions made by governments, militaries and universities around the world. Apple and Google should be thanking their lucky stars that Tim Berners-Lee gave the World Wide Web away for free or they would not be in business.

        Time for a bit of corporate humility me thinks.....

    4. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: I'm shocked, shocked to find that ...

      The difference is that Apple paid Xerox for what Xerox had stolen^HHHHHH 'innovated'.

    5. PJI

      Re: I'm shocked, shocked to find that ...

      >>Like Apple copied Xerox? Hello??

      Glad you are keen on recycling. But perhaps you should do some reading first. My understanding is that Apple visited Xerox openly and built on Xerox work with their formal agreement. No idea what the financial side was. Here are a couple of URLs just to give a flavour of the reality; it took me, oh, hours and hours of research to find them, well, nearly half a minute:

      http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/technology/2011/10/steve-jobs-xerox-parc.html

      http://www-sul.stanford.edu/mac/parc.html

      Now, do grow up and remember that just about nothing is absolutely new. Is there not some quotation to make clear this point? By some nonentity - Isaac Newton?

      "If I have seen further it is by standing on the shoulders of giants."

      (but first recorded in the twelfth century and attributed to Bernard of Chartres, Newton stole it, without acknowledgement!)

    6. Snapper
      FAIL

      Re: I'm shocked, shocked to find that ...

      Do your research properly, Apple PAID for that look at the Xerox GUI ideas and it's only lazy idiots like you who keep the myth going!

      1. Tom 13
        FAIL

        Re: Apple PAID for that look at the Xerox GUI ideas

        Yes and no.

        Yes they paid for a look. Yes, Xerox execs didn't realize quite how valuable their material was. But Jobs himself admitted they walked off with a hell of a lot more than was covered in their paid look see.

    7. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: I'm shocked, shocked to find that ...

      Apple PAID Xerox healthily for the tech in question.

      Repeating the lie that Apple stole tech from Xerox will not make it true. I have read this same falsehood several times today in different locations. Stupidity and ignorance reign supreme in all matters of Apple hatred.

      No news here ...

  2. GaryDMN

    How much MORE the damages will be

    They already awarded $600 million in this case, discounted from almost a billion, what this jury is deciding is how much over the $600 million. This is only on of several cases against Android vendors, that should end up costing Android vendors many billions, not just to Apple but to several companies holding patents that Android violated.

    1. sisk Silver badge

      Re: How much MORE the damages will be

      patents that Android violated.

      Such as?

  3. VinceH Silver badge
    Trollface

    Phil Schiller, Apple's senior vice president of marketing, hit back with the claim that Samsung's similar products made the world “notice our patent and litigation nastiness in a way that people never used to".

    There. Fixed it.

  4. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    I'd hate to be on that jury. I couldn't be on it anyways. No way could I be impartial. Round corners have been around as least as long as Stonehenge.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      But apples have been around longer than Stonehenge.

  5. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Shamsung execs?

    So how come sammy didn't provide some senior execs as witnesses if there is so much at stake?

    1. Boris the Cockroach Silver badge
      Meh

      Re: Shamsung execs?

      To afraid they'd get imprisoned in the land of the free for not paying a Cali based multi-national that manufactures most of its products in China and refuses to bring the profits back to the US unless it gets a tax break.

  6. dan1980
    Megaphone

    Madness.

    I believe distinctive shapes and form-factors should be protected. If someone develops a triangular phone, for example, and that is a big part of their identity then fine.

    But really, it's up to the company to design that distinctive shape. Apple could have designed their phone in the shape of an apple (or a cuttlefish - whatever) and that would be a distinctive shape and suitable for protection as part of their brand identity. Instead, they made a phone shaped like a rounded-rectangle. They did this not because it is a distinctive shape (because it isn't) but because it's a sensible shape to make a mobile phone; a size and shape that fits into most pockets and no hard edges to catch.

    To talk about obviousness, you talk about someone with reasonable learning and ability in the relevant field. That field, in this instance, is industrial design. The idea that a rounded rectangle can be protected implies that the rounded rectangle is a non-obvious shape for a mobile phone; that industrial designers, when faced with the task of designing a phone, would not have thought to use such a shape prior to Apple showing doing so.

    You might say that it's the combination of the rounded-rectangle coupled with the dimensions, being somewhat flat and wide, however phones before the iPhone had been moving in that direction, getting slimmer and increasing their screen size.

    Yes, the original iPhone was distinctive, but hardly a revolutionary design. It is easy to argue that the design is largely an obvious one given a full touch-screen interface. Indeed, you need only look at the iPaq or O2 XDA devices to see this - rounded rectangles with a round button at the bottom of the screen. Those smart phones was designed like that not because it was a revolutionary branding decision, but because that's the shape and layout that makes the most sense for a touch-screen smartphone/PDA.

    I find it truly amazing that any competent person could, after viewing the prior art (in the form of previous phones and PDAs) conclude that a rounded-rectangle is somehow due protection as being part of a brand identity.

    Pinch-to-zoom is arguably less obvious but I am pretty sure there is prior art for that too.

    1. Dr. Mouse Silver badge

      Re: Madness.

      Pinch-to-zoom is arguably less obvious but I am pretty sure there is prior art for that too.

      I'm pretty certain of that, too, although I am too lazy to actually look it all up.

      I am sure, however, that Pinch-to-zoom was used in Minority Report. I know it's a film, but the concept (if not the precise implementation) was there. That came out in 2002, whereas the first iPhone came out in 2007 (and pinch-to-zoom much later than that).

    2. Philip Lewis

      Re: Madness.

      "You might say that it's the combination of the rounded-rectangle coupled with the dimensions, being somewhat flat and wide, however phones before the iPhone had been moving in that direction, getting slimmer and increasing their screen size."

      a) Apple lost the "rounded rectangle" design patent. Wrongly IMHO.

      b) IIRC Shamsung even used the same radius curve for the corners, amongst the infinite number available, something that is so improbable that is beyond all reasonable doubt that it was copied.

  7. Steven Roper

    What would make me laugh

    is, if Samsung phones being banned from sale in the US, the Koreans and Chinese reciprocate by banning the sale of iPhones in their own countries. I believe that would hurt Apple's overall sales figures a lot more than Samsung's.

    Not to mention the loss of freedom of choice should such a ban go through: if I were forced to choose between having an Apple smartphone or no smartphone at all - well, you'll have to try and reach me at the office.

    1. dubious

      Re: What would make me laugh

      As long as Obama steps in to veto the block citing "competitive conditions in the U.S. economy and the effect on U.S. consumers." it's all good.

      Oh, wait, Reality Distortion Field.

  8. Spanners Silver badge

    I think millions is not enough.

    Billions should be paid to recompense the economic sabotage by Apple.

    Samsung no more copied apple than Apple copied Xerox. Someone here has already said they don't think that happened.

    Apple however, has very calculatedly used (lawyer based) economic sabotage every time and everywhere they think they can. A lot of the time the cases have been dismissed but the idea was to sow FUD and just general spanners into the works. They succeeded in that. There are still some people who genuinely believe that Apple has a case. Tell a lie often enough and some people will believe you.

    The whole purpose of the whole horrid campaign was to try and keep their place at the top of the tree without actually competing their way there.

    They now sell less smartphones than their competitors and even their tablets have fallen from their perch. The only think that keeps them wealthy is the gullibility tax. They make more money per unit. Presumably, they are now trying to hang on to this but still don't want to sell anything better than they have.

    Apple really does sell above average kit but since the average includes £50 devices, that doesn't say too much.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: I think millions is not enough.

      "There are still some people who genuinely believe that Apple has a case. Tell a lie often enough and some people will believe you."

      Sorry to throw a spanner in the works, but ..

      There are still some people like you who genuinely believe that Apple stole something from Xerox. It is not true and never was.

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