Following a lengthy and extensive litigation that began in 2011 that culminated in a U.S. Supreme Court decision in December of 2016, smartphone industry titans Apple and Samsung will again find themselves in Federal District Court Judge Lucy Koh’s courtroom on remand to determine appropriate damages for Samsung’s infringement of Apple’s design patents.

Design Patent No. 593087

US Design Pat. No. 593,087

US Design Pat. No. 604,305

Design Patent No. 618677

US Design Pat. No. 618,677

As we have written before, Apple originally filed this patent infringement action in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California in 2011, alleging that, in relevant part, Samsung’s smartphones infringed three of Apple’s design patents. Judge Koh presided over the dispute. The jury found infringement of all three design patents, and the district court entered final judgment awarding $399 million attributable to Samsung’s infringement of the design patents. The Federal Circuit upheld the lower court’s judgment on the amount of damages for infringement of the design patents, and Samsung filed a petition for certiorari to the Supreme Court seeking reversal.

Continue Reading Apple and Samsung Are Headed Back to the Court Room

shutterstock_484403530The New Year brings excitement and anticipation of changes for the best.  Some of the pending patent cases provide us with ample opportunity to expect something new and, if not always very desirable to everybody, at least different.  In this post, we highlight several cases that present interesting issues and that we anticipate may provide for new and important developments in the patent law this year.

Continue Reading IP Cases to Watch in 2017

As we have covered in detail here before, Apple sued Samsung in 2011, for infringement of design patents covering a black rectangular front face with rounded corners, a rectangular front face with rounded corners and a raised rim, and a grid of 16 colorful icons on a black screen.   A jury found that several Samsung smartphones did infringe those patents and awarded $399 million in damages to Apple for Samsung’s design patent infringement. The Federal Circuit subsequently upheld the award.

Last week, the Supreme Court held that the relevant “article of manufacture” for arriving at a damages award for design patent infringement need not be the end product sold to the consumer, but may be only a component of that product. In Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd., et al. v. Apple Inc., 580 U.S. ___, No. 15-777, slip op. (Dec. 6, 2016), a unanimous 8-0 opinion authored by Justice Sotomayor reversed the Federal Circuit’s ruling that Apple was entitled to $399 million in damages, and remanded the case to the Federal Circuit.

To read more about the decision, please click here.

The oft-overlooked design patent has seen somewhat of a revival recently (at least in the media) ever since a jury in California awarded Apple $399 million in damages — i.e., all Samsung profits from the sale of several of its smartphone and tablet devices — for Samsung’s infringement of three Apple design patents in Apple, Inc., v. Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd.

Design Patent No. 593087

US Design Pat. No. 593,087

Design Patent No. 604305

US Design Pat. No. 604,305

Design Patent No. 618677

US Design Pat. No. 618,677

Continue Reading Design Patents – Unlocking the Value of The User Experience