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Samsung Didn't "Willfully" Infringe Apple Patents Says Judge Koh

Authored by: Steven Blum — Jan 30, 2013

As I'm sure you know, Samsung was forced to pay Apple over a $1 billion last August for allegedly infringing Apple's iPhone patents in a landmark ruling that made international news. But in the world of patent infringement cases, lawsuits never really end, and judgements are just jumping off points for the next suit.

So when Samsung was slapped with the giant fine, they did what any other multinational billion dollar corporation would do: they fought back. One of the main arguments Samsung made was that they didn't believe at the time that Apple's iPhone patents were "valid," and thus even if they did infringe on those patents, they did not do so "willfully."

Yesterday, Judge Lucy Koh ruled that Samsung was, in fact, right about that. She ruled that Samsung's arguments seemed reasonable enough to rule out an overall finding of willful infringement. All those Touchwiz elements that Apple claimed were direct copies of the iPhone (like icons, screen unlock, etc.) are still direct copies, but Samsung didn't know that Apple had a viable claim on them, and Judge Koh seems to agree.

But before you start imagining Samsung asking for a billion back, it's worth remembering that just because the willfulness has been overturned, the $1.049 billion infringement verdict hasn't. Samsung won't get slapped with any extra fees for "willfulness" and Judge Koh could theoretically reduce the existing damages, but so far she hasn't done that.

That said, given how much Samsung could have ended up paying for the "wilful" damages, you better believe they're breathing a sigh of relief right now.

Source: The Verge

Steven Blum has written more than 2,000 blog posts as a founding member of AndroidPIT's English editorial team. A graduate of the University of Washington, Steven Blum also studied Journalism at George Washington University in Washington D.C. for two years. Since then, his writing has appeared in The Stranger, The Seattle P-I, Blackbook Magazine and Venture Villlage. He loves the HTC One and hopes the company behind it still exists in a few years.

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  • Stevie Richardson Jan 30, 2013 Link to comment

    cry baby apple need to remember WOT GOES AROUND COMES AROUND

  • Rutger Jan 30, 2013 Link to comment


    I wonder what's happened with the argument about the deal Apple/HTC. And what happened with all those things gone wrong during the trial (Prio Art, Jury made up their mind early et. etc.)

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