Apple demands $1 billion from Samsung for patent infringement

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Apple and Samsung return to court
Apple and Samsung are battling it out again.
Photo: Killian Bell/Cult of Mac

Apple wants Samsung to cough up a whopping $1 billion in damages for infringing iPhone design patents.

The two companies again returned to court this week over the long-running dispute, which first began seven years ago. Apple told jurors that Samsung should hand over all the profit it made on four devices that were heavily inspired by the iPhone. Samsung’s lawyers disagree.

Samsung has already been found guilty of copying the iPhone. It infringed three design patents and two utility patents awarded to Apple to cover early models of its popular smartphone. But the sum of damages Samsung must pay is yet to be agreed.

A jury agreed in 2012 that Apple should be awarded $1.05 billion, but that figure was whittled down in subsequent retrials. In December 2016, the Supreme Court decided that the case should return to court after ruling it was unfair on Samsung to take all its profits on $3.3 billion in sales.

Apple wants $1 billion from Samsung

Apple and Samsung are now fighting it out again.

Apple lawyer Bill Lee told jurors this week that their sole purpose was to determine what damages the company should collect. Should the fee be based on the money Samsung made from the total cost of its devices, or should it be based specifically on the infringing components?

Apple argues Samsung’s entire profits should be taken into account. Lee asked jurors to “step back in time” to 2006 and consider what cellphones looked like before the iPhone. Samsung argues, however, that it should pay up just $28 million.

Apple is “seeking profits on the entire phone,” explained Samsung lawyer John Quinn, reports Bloomberg. But Apple’s patents “do not cover the entire phone,” he added.

Just like all the others, this battle with Samsung will surely rage on for some time before a final decision is made. There’s no doubt that Samsung will have to pay Apple something, but exactly how much it will pay remains anyone’s guess.