Late yesterday, a nine-member jury at a San Jose, California, USA court awarded Apple approximately $1.05 ($1,051,855,000) billion in damages after finding that Samsung infringed on six patents. This is a huge victory for Apple! The jury has reportedly said that Samsung’s infringement was unlawful. The judge can even triple this amount!
However, it could lead to a situation, at least for the moment, that there would be fewer smartphone (and tablet) options! Here are statements from Apple and Samsung, post the verdict!
We are grateful to the jury for their service and for investing the time to listen to our story and we were thrilled to be able to finally tell it. The mountain of evidence presented during the trail showed that Samsung’s copying went far deeper than even we knew. The lawsuits between Apple and Samsung were about much more than patents or money. They were about values. At Apple, we value originality and innovation and pour our lives into making the best products on earth. We make these products to delight our customers, not for our competitors to flagrantly copy. We applaud the court for finding Samsung’s behavior willful and for sending a loud and clear message that stealing isn’t right.
Today’s verdict should not be viewed as a win for Apple, but as a loss for the American consumer. It will lead to fewer choices, less innovation, and potentially higher prices. It is unfortunate that patent law can be manipulated to give one company a monopoly over rectangles with rounded corners, or technology that is being improved every day by Samsung and other companies. Consumers have the right to choices, and they know what they are buying when they purchase Samsung products. This is not the final word in this case or in battles being waged in courts and tribunals around the world, some of which have already rejected many of Apple’s claims. Samsung will continue to innovate and offer choices for the consumer.
So who is the winner? As of now, no one!
Is the patent system weak? Perhaps, it is!
Who could be the real winner? Possibly, Microsoft, but we wait and see!
The global smartphone and tablet battle continues!