updated 05:16 pm EDT, Mon July 15, 2013
Lack of Samsung product embargo following billion-dollar award at stake
The US Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit has scheduled Apple's appeal of a post-trial injunction decision by Judge Lucy Koh following the landmark Apple versus Samsung smartphone trial in 2012. Apple's appeal is objecting to the denial of Samsung product injunctions against 13 Samsung products that were found to be violating eight patents during the original trial. The appeal has been scheduled for August 9, just days after an US International Trade Commission embargo against Apple products in a different matter is scheduled to go into effect unless vetoed by the Obama administration or stayed pending that appeal.
Apple is seeking embargoes on the (mostly older) products that were found to be infringing in the original trial. A December hearing held by the judge overseeing the case, Judge Lucy Koh, found that when only a small amount of the product is found to be infringing, it does not justify a ban on the whole product.
Judge Koh ruled on December 17, 2012 that "the phones at issue in this case contain a broad range of features, only a small fraction of which are covered by Apple's patents. It does not follow that entire products must be forever banned from the market because they incorporate, among their myriad features, a few narrow protected functions." She added that "there is no suggestion that Samsung will wipe out Apple's customer base, or force Apple out of the business of making smartphones."
Patent analyst Florian Mueller calls the current situation between the pair of industry giants "upside down" in terms of remedies. Despite Apple being handed a billion-dollar award in court last September awarded on non-standards essential patents, Apple has no injunction on violating products, and will not collect its damages award for years, when the entire gamut of appeals and gamesmanship in court has run its course.