Samsung Asks for Lift on Galaxy Tablet Ban while Apple Wants $3 Billion in Damages
Apple’s lawyers are reportedly planning to request $3 billion in damages from Samsung for infringing on the company’s iPhone hardware and software patents, nearly three times the damages awarded by a jury last month. Meanwhile, Samsung asked a federal appeals court yesterday to help lift a ban on the company’s Galaxy Tab 10.1 that still stands despite the jury’s ruling that the tablet computer did not violate Apple’s patents.
According to a report by The Korea Times, Apple is planning to ask U.S. Federal Judge Lucy Koh to triple the original $1.049 billion in damages originally awarded by a jury in August.
From The Korea Times:
The finding of what legal officials say is "willful infringement" enables Apple to seek triple the damages awarded.
"By using that condition, Apple has decided to request the judge to order Samsung to pay more than $3 billion in the hearing on the San Jose verdict on Sept. 21 in California," one senior legal executive, who asked to be quoted as a "reliable source."
Judge Koh would have the authority to increase the damages, but doing so would require her to overturn all or part of the jury’s verdict, which is uncommon. Samsung is already engaged in the appeals process as well, so any decisions regarding damages will have to wait for a ruling from a higher court.
Samsung’s efforts in the meantime are focused on convincing the court to reject the injunctions that could ban its smartphones and tablets from sale in the U.S.
The company is also seeking to lift a three month old ban on sales of the Galaxy Tab 10.1, since last month’s verdict found that the tablet did not infringe any patents. Koh denied Samsung’s earlier motion to dissolve the temporary injuction, saying that the ongoing appeals process prevented her from lifting the ban. In response, Samsung has asked the U.S. appeals court to expedite the process in order to send the case back to the dictrict court, thus allowing Koh to end the ban.
Regardless of the outcome of the subsequent motions and hearings, last month’s verdict was a major victory for Apple in the smartphone and tablet market, effectively ensuring that competitors will be forced to avoid designs similar to Apple’s or face possible lawsuits.
Samsung is not completely sunk, either. The company’s efforts to update its devices to remove infringing elements could help it avoid or at least maneuver around possible injunctions. Moreover, Samsung’s latest smartphone model, the Galaxy S III, is not affected by the lawsuit and can continue with its sales.
It might also be in Apple’s best interest to keep Samsung from failing entirely, considering that the South Korean-based company is one of Apple’s largest parts supplier, especially in the case of the iPhone.