In 2012 Apple were awarded $1.05 billion when a jury found that Samsung had infringed on five patents covering technology in the iPhone. There was later a retrial, and after another long and arduous battle the sum was reduced to $400 million.
Now a judge has ordered another hearing of the issues. However, Judge Lucy Koh has invoked a "Groundhog Day" rule: stating that the parties must only present evidence and lines of argument that were presented in the previous trials. They are forbidden from bringing any new evidence or new takes on the old evidence.
She went on to explain that the jury will be compelled to find that there was copying in three design patents (like UK Registered Designs) and two utility patents covering the "pinch to zoom" and "bounce-back" scrolling mechanisms.
The jury will, in effect, be allowed only to determine the award of damages, which may go up or down.
Samsung is arguing that the award of damages was artificially inflated when jurors were told that they may calculate the sum based on the profits made on the infringing Samsung devices as a whole. Samsung's case is that as consumers did not buy its infringing products for looks alone, damages should be restricted to the value of the infringing parts, which is substantially lower.
The US Supreme Court has already agreed with this premise. However, instead of then explaining how this calculation should be made, the court referred the decision back to the Federal court system for a jury to do it.
Apple are likely to argue that without the design and outer casing the phones had no value, and as such the proper assessment of damages is on the whole of the device.
If you have any questions on the above, please do not hesitate to contact the team at McDaniel & Co. on 0191 281 4000 or firstname.lastname@example.org: Designs, Digital/Tech, EU/International, Patents