A number of media have reported that Apple (NASDAQ: AAPL) has won a key patent victory in a jury trial held in federal court. Early reports are that the jury upheld all seven of the Apple patents in question, and said that Samsung was found to violate six of them. The decision comes about a month from the scheduled release of the iPhone 5
A U.S. jury awarded Apple Inc $1.051 billion in damages from Samsung Electronics Co Ltd, finding that the Korean company infringed some of Apple’s valid patents.
According to the WSJ:
The award from the nine-member jury is shy of Apple’s request for more than $2.5 billion, but much larger than Samsung’s estimates and still ranking among the largest intellectual-property awards on record.
Jurors found that Samsung infringed all but one of the seven patents at issue in the case–a patent covering the physical design of the iPad. The found willful infringement by Samsung in five cases, a finding that can affect the size of damage verdicts. They found all seven of Apple’s patents valid, despite, Samsung’s attempts to have them thrown out.
The verdict is a horrible blow to Samsung, now the world’s largest handset company, having moved by Nokia (NYSE: NOK) late last year. Samsung is considered the only viable competitor to Apple in the smartphone market. It is believed that Apple and Samsung are the only manufacturers which make money in the sector.
Samsung may have to substantially alter some of its products, which could include its recent hit–the Galaxy S III>
The news could hardly come at a better time for Apple, just before the launch of its new flagship iPhone 5
Douglas A. McIntyre