Printed from http://www.electronista.com

Appeals court reverses Galaxy Nexus sales ban

updated 01:55 pm EDT, Thu October 11, 2012

Case will go back to California court for reconsideration

A US appeals court has overturned a preliminary injunction that placed a sales ban on Samsung's Galaxy Nexus smartphone. The case will now return to a California court for reconsideration. Apple initially won an injunction against the Galaxy Nexus in June of this year, but today's ruling found that Judge Lucy Koh's court had "abused its discretion" during its decision on the injunction.

Apple initially brought suit against Samsung in February of this year, alleging that the Galaxy Nexus -- developed to Google's specifications and running an unskinned version of Android -- infringed on eight patents. The patent at issue in the current appeals case involves US Patent No. 8,086,604, which covers an apparatus for a unified search allowing users to search multiple data storage locations on a device. Apple claims that the Quick Search Box on the Galaxy Nexus constitutes an infringement of Apple's unified search patent.

In appealing the injunction, Samsung argued that the court had abused its discretion in finding that Apple would be irreparably harmed in the absence of a sales injunction and that the court's finding that Apple had sufficiently established a causal nexus between the alleged harm and the infringing conduct was yet another abuse of discretion. In returning the decision to the California courts, the Court of Appeals agreed that Koh's court had abused its discretion in determining the establishment of a sufficient causal nexus, but it did not address Samsung's argument regarding irreparable harm.

While it did not fully comment on the factor of irreparable harm, the court did in its statement cast some doubt on Apple's claim. "Sales lost to an infringing product cannot irreparably harm a patentee if consumers buy that product for reasons other than the patented feature," the court said.

In short, the court determined that Apple's argument that the unified search feature was a primary driver of Galaxy Nexus sales was belied by Apple's own evidence showing that unified search was not even among the top five reasons consumers select Android smartphones. Therefore, Apple could not, in the appeals court's opinion, demonstrate that the use of a unified search feature would irreparably harm Apple's sales.

The case will now return to a California court for reconsideration. No date has been set for when new proceedings might begin.



By Electronista Staff
Post tools:

TAGS :

toggle

Comments

  1. lockhartt

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: 04-11-00

    Go figure... that's actually a reasonable, rational decision on a patent issue.

    The top five reasons people buy Android phones are cost, cost, cost, perceived open-ness, and cost... in that order :)

  1. testudo

    Forum Regular

    Joined: 08-06-01

    Originally Posted by lockharttView Post

    Go figure... that's actually a reasonable, rational decision on a patent issue.
    The top five reasons people buy Android phones are cost, cost, cost, perceived open-ness, and cost... in that order :)



    Right, because no one would buy an Android phone because they actually like it, or like the bigger screen, or the OS, or the network, or their personal needs for support or anything at all. Nope, anyone who doesn't have an iPhone is just cheap cheap cheap.

    BTW, you forgot a reason. Hatred of Apple. Isn't that always what we hear?

  1. testudo

    Forum Regular

    Joined: 08-06-01

    Originally Posted by lockharttView Post

    Go figure... that's actually a reasonable, rational decision on a patent issue.



    Actually, I find it narrow-minded. "Sales lost to an infringing product cannot irreparably harm a patentee if consumers buy that product for reasons other than the patented feature," the court said. Define "for reasons other than the patented feature". Does that mean "If the product didn't have said feature, the phone wouldn't sell as well"? Or "The reason someone buys the product is because it has feature X"? Is irreparable harm only if the company wouldn't survive the infringement? One thing is for sure. A company that is infringing can sell their product for less for they don't need to either pay royalties nor do they have to cover the cost of development of the patent.

    But it would all come out in the wash for the penalty an infringer would pay would theoretically cover licensing costs at the very least (so all nexus sales is money for Apple!) and/or penalties. They'd get their money. However, they might not survive as a company (OK, Apple will survive, other companies might have issues).

  1. Charles Martin

    MacNN Editor

    Joined: 08-04-01

    "Right, because no one would buy an Android phone because ... [of] the OS ..."

    On that point, we finally find something to agree on. There's no reason to buy a cheap knock-off version of an OS when the real thing is available at the same price points, only without the malware.

    If people want an alternative to iOS, they should get a Windows Phone, or Symbian, or BlackBerry. Getting "pretend iOS" is just juvenile and makes a statement about you that isn't flattering.

Login Here

Not a member of the MacNN forums? Register now for free.

toggle

Network Headlines

toggle

Most Popular

Sponsor

Recent Reviews

Tablo DVR

With over-the-top content options growing past Hulu and Netflix, consumers may be finding it harder to justify paying a monthly fee fo ...

Sound Blaster Roar Bluetooth speaker

There could very well be a new king of the hill for Bluetooth speakers, with Sound Blaster's recent entry into the marketplace. Bringi ...

Kenu Airframe Plus

Simple, stylish and effective, the Kenu Airframe + portable car mount is the latest addition to Kenu's lineup. Released earlier this y ...

Sponsor

toggle

Most Commented

 
toggle

Popular News