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Apple V Samsung: "Disappointed" Koreans Fined $900M For "Copying"

By Oonagh Reidy | Friday | 22/11/2013

Apple v Samsung verdict is out. And its not good news for the Koreans, forced to cough up an additional $290m to rival.

Samsung has been ordered to cough up an additional $290,456,793 in damages to Apple, as the verdict of the arduous patents trial was announced in the US state of California. 

The decision, handed down by  an eight-panel jury, some with limited knowledge of technology matters, was announced in 12 pm US time, Thursday.  

The $290 million is $100m less than the $380m demanded by scorned Apple, irked at Samsung's invasion of smartphone, tablet markets.  

This brings to almost $900 million the total, Samsung, now the world biggest phone maker, has to pay out to its rival, who first accused the Galaxy maker of stealing its patented technology back in 2011, copying the look and feel of its signature iPhone and iPad. 

The decision, following a two day deliberation by the eight panel judge at Northern District of California, was the outcome of a retrial of the Samsung V Apple case, where Judge Judy Koh had first ordered Samsung to pay $1.05 bn in damages.

But, still, Samsung believed it owed just $52 million more (on top of $600m it was already ordered to pay), said it was "disappointed by today's decision, which is based in large part on a patent that the US Patent and Trademark Office has recently deemed invalid."

A range of devices, mostly older models, were deemed to be infringing Apple patents including: Nexus, Galaxy Tab, Galaxy Prevail, Gem, Nexus S 4G, among others.  

On Wednesday, the Koreans has sought to file an emergency motion to stay to put the case on hold based on a decision by the Central Reexamination Division of the United States Patent and Trademark Office, and also sought a mistrial on racial grounds, which was denied although the decision on the stay was not decided. 

"While we move forward with our post-trial motions and appeals, we will continue to innovate with groundbreaking technologies and great products that are loved by our many customers all around the world," Samsung said.

Apple, on the other hand, said "this case has always been about more than patents and money," in a post - verdict statement.  

"It has been about innovation and the hard work that goes into inventing products that people love. While it's impossible to put a price tag on those values, we are grateful to the jury for showing Samsung that copying has a cost."

During the trial, Apple VP Marketing Phil Schiller admitted development of iPhone, released in 2007, was a major gamble for the company:

"We had a saying inside the company that it was a 'bet-the-company' product. We were starting to do well again in iPod. Then here we're going to invest all these resources, financial as well as people, in creating this product."

Apple claims to have lost $114m in profits due to lost sales, however, Samsung coined a lot more than the $900m is will now be forced to cough up. 

The Galaxy maker made $3.5 billion revenues on sales of 10.7 million 'infringing' devices, it was revealed in court. 

Apple and Samsung are still fighting in Australia Federal court over a similar patent row, as well as Korea and several European states. 

Apple Insider reports: "Apple's attorneys said the company has a chance to be "made whole" by reinstating $380 million in vacated damages, while Samsung's lawyers argued that Apple exaggerated the importance of the five patents involved in the case. "

However, patents experts Florian Mulller wrote on his blog: "For more than two years I had the greatest respect for the work Samsung's lawyers were doing on this case. They have a weak case, but I thought they were doing a great job and giving Apple a run for the money under the circumstances."

But in the end it was not enough. 

The real winners in the case appears to be the lawyers of both companies.  

Samsung is likely to continue its ranking as worlds biggest phone maker, and is making headway on tablet market, while Apple lags behind due to lack of innovation and (still) high price points. 

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