Jury awards Apple $290 million in patent feud with Samsung

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SAN JOSE, Calif. -- A federal jury on Thursday awarded Apple $290 million in damages in its patent feud with Samsung, close to the amount the Silicon Valley tech giant sought for Samsung's copying of the iPhone and iPad in 13 Samsung smartphones and tablets.

With the verdict, Apple is owed a total of more than $900 million for its overall patent infringement case against Samsung, including the results of last year's trial, in which a separate jury found that the South Korean maker of Galaxy smartphones and tablets and other devices violated Apple's patent rights in dozens of products.

In the most recent trial, which began last week, a six-woman, two-man jury awarded the $290 million for 13 Samsung smartphones and tablets already found to have copied iPhone and iPad patents, such as Apple's bounce back and pinch-to-zoom features. The jury broke down damages for each of the smartphones, finding the Samsung Infuse 4G, at nearly $100 million, and the Droid Charge, at $60 million, warranted the most damages.

The Samsung products are an older line of smartphones and tablets long since replaced by newer models, but the damages case was considered important to the two rivals' patent feud unfolding in courts around the world. The damages verdict also finally positions the case to move forward to a federal appeals court, which may decide a host of key legal issues in the evolving patent battles over smartphone and tablet technology.

U.S. District Judge Lucy Koh ordered a retrial of the damages issue on the 13 Samsung products after she concluded that the first jury improperly calculated damages and slashed $450 million from its original $1 billion verdict. The latest jury verdict restores much of the $450 million Judge Koh cut.

During the trial, Apple argued that Samsung owed nearly $380 million in damages for infringing its iPhone and iPad technology, based on Apple's lost profits, Samsung's profits from selling infringing products and royalties. Apple portrayed Samsung as a company trying to capitalize on copying the popular iPhone to keep pace in the smartphone market.

Samsung, meanwhile, told the jury that Apple had inflated the worth of its patents and overstated their importance to consumer choice, arguing that damages should not exceed $52 million. Samsung contended that consumers buy Samsung products for their lower cost, Android operating system and factors such as larger screens, not for Apple's patented features.

Barring a global settlement, which has eluded the two companies, Apple and Samsung are far from done with each other. The competitors are set to square off again in March in another patent trial, this time over more recent smartphones and tablets, although even that case will be well behind the release of even newer versions of Apple and Samsung products.

In addition, a federal appeals court this week revived Apple's bid to block the U.S. sales of Samsung infringing products in the case that has been resolved. The issue was sent back to Judge Koh for further review.

Meanwhile, Apple and Samsung continue to dominate the worldwide market for smartphones and tablets, fueling Apple's parallel rivalry with Google and its Android operating system, which runs Samsung's products.


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