Apple’s $120 mn patent award from Samsung upheld by top US court

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  • Supreme Court upheld $120m patent award Samsung was ordered to pay Apple
  • Apple sued Samsung over patents for ‘slide to unlock’ and other features
  • Case is separate from bigger battle in which Samsung was ordered to pay $1bn

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Cheyenne Macdonald For Dailymail.com

The US Supreme Court on Monday upheld a $120 million patent award Samsung was ordered to pay Apple in the latest ruling in a series of legal skirmishes between the top two smartphone makers.

The US justices let stand without comment a 2016 appeals court verdict reinstating the award for Apple, which sued Samsung over patents for ‘slide to unlock’ and other features used on smartphones.

The case is separate from a bigger patent court battle in which Samsung was initially ordered to pay $1 billion to the iPhone maker. 

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iPhone maker Apple prevailed in the US Supreme Court a $120 million patent suit against Samsung, one of several legal battles between the tech giants

iPhone maker Apple prevailed in the US Supreme Court a $120 million patent suit against Samsung, one of several legal battles between the tech giants

iPhone maker Apple prevailed in the US Supreme Court a $120 million patent suit against Samsung, one of several legal battles between the tech giants

THE COURT BATTLES

In the latest legal skirmish, Apple claims Samsung has copied a number of iPhone features, including ‘slide to unlock.’

The two companies have battled in close to a dozen countries over the last few years, with each accusing the other of infringing on various patents.

Apple has also accused Samsung of copying the look of the iPhone for the design of its Galaxy and other smartphones. 

That case is set for a new trial over some elements of the damages awarded.

Monday’s ruling involved some smartphone features Apple alleged were copied by the South Korean electronics giant. 

Samsung had claimed these features were ‘obvious’ and thus not able to be patented.

Apple had sought some $2.2 billion at trial, only to have a jury award the California-based company $119.6 million. 

An appeals panel overturned that verdict, but the full appellate panel reinstated the award in October 2016 by a vote of 8-3.

Samsung and Apple agreed in 2014 to drop all patent disputes outside the United States, marking a partial ceasefire in a seemingly relentless legal war between the world’s two tech giants.

The companies have battled in close to a dozen countries, with each accusing the other of infringing on various patents related to their flagship smartphone and tablet products.

Just last month, a US judge ordered a new trial to determine how much Samsung should pay Apple in light of claims the firm had copied the look of the iPhone.

The companies have battled in close to a dozen countries, with each accusing the other of infringing on various patents. Pictured is Samsung's Galaxy S8, which launched in April 2017

The companies have battled in close to a dozen countries, with each accusing the other of infringing on various patents. Pictured is Samsung's Galaxy S8, which launched in April 2017

The companies have battled in close to a dozen countries, with each accusing the other of infringing on various patents. Pictured is Samsung’s Galaxy S8, which launched in April 2017

The move came almost a year after the Supreme court set aside a $399 million award against Samsung, as part of a $548 million payment that the Korean firm made to Apple in December 2015.

The dispute centers on claims that Samsung copied the iPhone for its Galaxy and other devices.

In the order last month, US District Judge Lucy Koh in San Jose, California said the jury instructions at the Apple-Samsung trial ‘did not accurately reflect the law’ and may have prejudiced Samsung by preventing jurors from considering whether any infringement covered ‘something other than the entire phone,’ Reuters reported at the time.