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Apple’s Inquisition to triple the $1 billion fine rejected


Greedy, adamant or tenacious- we do not know what adjective would suit the Cupertino giant. Even after winning the battle against Samsung and claiming a whopping $1.05 billion in compensation, Apple had blatantly demanded to triple the charges it received in compensation, in the latest petition filed against Samsung.

Apple had sought to raise the $1.05 billion compensation, after a US jury found that Samsung acted ‘wilfully’ to infringe the patents held by Apple. The jury had also found Samsung guilty of marketing 26 smartphones that infringed Apple’s registered patents.

However, in the new hearing, District Judge Lucy Koh has rejected the demand to further increase the fine. Apple had also demanded to block sales of 26 Samsung devices in US, which was also rejected. It also denied Apple’s inquisition that claimed Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 infringes a patent held by its iPad technology.

“To the extent that Apple does address lost downstream sales, Apple discusses only Samsung’s gains and makes no attempt to identify any specific losses Apple has suffered,” U.S. District Court Judge Lucy Koh wrote in her ruling.

Judge Koh rejected Apple’s appeal as it was unable to prove the fact that the erratic sales of Samsung products were driven by the stolen technology. That was obvious, as no one buys a smartphone just because it has a ‘pinch and zoom’ capability. The ‘pinch and zoom’ feature is one of the many functions that the North-Korean giant is accused of stealing.

“The court will not speculate as to how, precisely, the jury calculated its damages award,” Koh wrote in her ruling. It is “reasonable to assume” that the award is “intended to compensate Apple for losses stemming from all of the violations the jury found.”

Though she upheld the validity of patents filed by Apple, she rejected a plea from both sides asking for another trial on Samsung’s improper use of Apple’s iPhone and iPad technology.

“Accordingly, the trial was fairly conducted, with uniform time limits and rules of evidence applied to both sides,’ the judge said.

“A new trial would be contrary to the interests of justice.”

Reportedly, Samsung had also appealed that the major verdict that had been drawn in favour Apple be overturned. Samsung claims that many of the line-item calculations were done incorrectly and that the damages can be dramatically reduced.  In the December hearing, the judge was considering the recalculation of at least some of the compensation charges, but no concrete indications are out on how many reductions are still possible. According to Kathleen Sullivan, a lawyer for Samsung, the charges could still be further reduced by over $600 million.

Sensing the gravity of the issue, the jury has decided to keep the verdict intact for a while.

Both the tech-giants are competing over an industry that is estimated at $346 billion this year by the Yankee Group. With Apple and Samsung holding more than 70% stake in the smartphone segment, this surely is a realistic version of Game of Phones.

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