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Apple says appeals court decisions hinder patent protection efforts against Samsung

post #1 of 21
Thread Starter 
The decision by a United States appeal court to continue allowing Samsung to sell the Galaxy Nexus prevents Apple from protecting the patents a jury previously found the Nexus to be infringing on, Apple's lawyers have argued.

Attorneys representing Apple have filed a motion to have the full complement of judges at the U.S. Court of Appeals review two appeals in the ongoing patent struggle between the two companies, Bloomberg reported on Friday. Apple seeks to reverse an October ruling by a three-judge Federal Circuit panel that allowed for Samsung to continue selling the Galaxy Nexus.

Galaxy Nexus


Apple's filing for an en banc, or a review involving all nine Court of Appeals for the Federal Court judges, follows a prior bid by Samsung last week to block Apple from making just such a filing. Apple had won an injunction against the device in June of last year, but the CAFC found that the court granting the injunction had "abused its discretion" in banning sales of the handset.

In its decision, the Court of Appeals found that the comprehensive search and voice command features built into the Galaxy Nexus, which were said to be infringing on Apple patents, were not in themselves major likely drivers of consumer adoption.

Apple, already having asked for a review of the October decision, is also asking for the panel to reconsider a December ruling by U.S. District Judge Lucy Koh to allow Samsung to continue selling products found by a jury to be infringing Apple patents in a $1 billion verdict in August of 2012.

Allowing Samsung to continue selling infringing products, according to Apple, makes it "essentially impossible for a patentee to halt a direct competitor's deliberate and successful copying of the patentee's innovative designs and features."

The panel's finding in October that certain infringing features were not drivers of demand, says Apple, is flawed since individual features "will almost never drive consumer demand by themselves, at least not provably" since "consumers buy complex technological products for a whole host of reasons." Further, Apple argues that a permanent injunction on offending devices is necessary in order to keep Samsung from attempting to "attract Apple's customers through deliberate copying, with a damages award being merely a cost of doing business."
post #2 of 21
Since two of the patents have already been preliminarily ruled invalid by the US Patent office on all 20 claims, I think this will be an uphill battle for Apple unless they win the appeal of the invalidation of the two patents in question...

I know Apple has 60 days to appeal the invalidation ruling, has anyone heard how that is going????
post #3 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

The decision by a United States appeal court to continue allowing Samsung to sell the Galaxy Nexus prevents Apple from protecting the patents a jury previously found the Nexus to be infringing on, Apple's lawyers have argued.

 

Perhaps Apple's lawyers forgot that's how the US legal system fundamentally works. 

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post #4 of 21
Originally Posted by thataveragejoe View Post
Perhaps Apple's lawyers forgot that's how the US legal system fundamentally works. 

 

It's probably the length of time this is taking with which they take issue. If the damages can be altered when it's finally wrapped up, it becomes less of an issue. Can they? 

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post #5 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by sranger View Post

Since two of the patents have already been preliminarily ruled invalid by the US Patent office on all 20 claims, I think this will be an uphill battle for Apple unless they win the appeal of the invalidation of the two patents in question...

I know Apple has 60 days to appeal the invalidation ruling, has anyone heard how that is going????
 

 

The preliminary invalidation ruling is irrelevant. The products at issue are no longer on the market, so these products aren't going to be effected. Apple wants the injunction because it will be easier to add future Samsung devices that infringe the same patents to this current lawsuit without having to wait out a trial on those specific devices. Apple would only have to bring a Motion in Court asking for the new products to be added. Samsung would be given an opportunity to rebut Apple's claims, including bringing up possible invalidation of the at issue patents. If Apple doesn't get an injunction granted, it has to seek injunctions in separate lawsuits over new devices found to infringe it's patents. Essentially the way things stand now, Samsung has no motivation to not infringe Apple's patents because Samsung knows the worst that is going to happen is we may have to pay some money. An injunction order on previous products, provides Apple a more streamlined way to address new infringement over previously ruled on IP. 

post #6 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by TBell View Post

 

The preliminary invalidation ruling is irrelevant. The products at issue are no longer on the market, so these products aren't going to be effected. Apple wants the injunction because it will be easier to add future Samsung devices that infringe the same patents to this current lawsuit without having to wait out a trial on those specific devices. Apple would only have to bring a Motion in Court asking for the new products to be added. Samsung would be given an opportunity to rebut Apple's claims, including bringing up possible invalidation of the at issue patents. If Apple doesn't get an injunction granted, it has to seek injunctions in separate lawsuits over new devices found to infringe it's patents. Essentially the way things stand now, Samsung has no motivation to not infringe Apple's patents because Samsung knows the worst that is going to happen is we may have to pay some money. An injunction order on previous products, provides Apple a more streamlined way to address new infringement over previously ruled on IP. 

 

Which leads to the next step in this dance, why bother to innovate at all if innovations can be freely stolen.

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post #7 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by hill60 View Post

Which leads to the next step in this dance, why bother to innovate at all if innovations can be freely stolen.

 

This is about software patent infringement.   Infringement of a software patent rarely involves stealing.  Rather it's usually about coming up with the same idea that someone else managed to get a patent on.

 

As for "why bother", it's been demonstrated for thousands of years that people will continue to innovate with or without protection.

 

Just look at the hundreds of thousand of apps currently available, of which I bet only a handful have some kind of patent or trademark protection.

 

Heck, we really didn't have software patents until the 1990s, yet look at all the incredible innovation that happened before then, including at Xerox and Apple, much of which actually depending on someone copying an idea and improving on it, someone else doing the same, and so on and so forth.  Often, innovation goes FASTER in a freely shared idea environment, not slower.


Edited by KDarling - 1/18/13 at 6:24pm
post #8 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by KDarling View Post

 

......

 

Heck, we really didn't have software patents until the 1990s, yet look at all the incredible innovation that happened before then, including at Xerox and Apple, much of which actually depending on someone copying an idea and improving on it, someone else doing the same, and so on and so forth.  Often, innovation goes FASTER in a freely shared idea environment, not slower.

 

 

Combined with L Page recent declarations "In an interview with Wired, Google CEO and cofounder Larry Page offered his take on the state of technology, saying that companies like Apple and Facebook should dedicate more resources on innovation rather than competion.", it is easy to see what you are aiming at ....

post #9 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by umrk_lab View Post

Combined with L Page recent declarations ..., it is easy to see what you are aiming at ....

 

 

If you have an opinion about the topic, please share it, in instead of trying to put words in other people's mouths.

 

I wasn't "aiming" at anything for the future.   I was talking about computer innovation history.   I also think we're lucky that we didn't have software patents back in the 70s. which could've allowed a few companies to own major pieces of the fledgling home computer industry.  Just look at the mess that started with GIFs and the LZH patent in the mid 80s.

 

As for Page, I hadn't even read his comments.  Had no desire to.  However, you forced me to read the original Wired article (have you read it?)... which (no surprise) has a very different thrust than the AI headlines.  The part about Apple and litigation was very tiny.


Edited by KDarling - 1/19/13 at 5:58am
post #10 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by KDarling View Post

 

 

If you have an opinion about the topic, please share it, in instead of trying to put words in other people's mouths.

 

I wasn't "aiming" at anything for the future.   I was talking about computer innovation history.   I also think we're lucky that we didn't have software patents back in the 70s. which would've allowed a few companies to lock down major pieces.  Just look at the mess that started with GIFs and the LZH patent in the mid 80s.

 

As for Page, I hadn't even read his comments.  Had no desire to.  However, you forced me to read the original Wired article (have you read it?)... which (no surprise) has a very different thrust than the AI headlines.  The part about Apple and litigation was very tiny.

 

 

Well , no problem. My point is that innovators deserve some kind of reward, for the money and energy they put into it (and this is one one the key principles behind legal systems, whatever they are). Namely, I do not think the "what is yours is mine" philosophy is a fair and viable option. Frankly, I have no time to dissect Larry Page's statements, he is not in my primary focus of interests. As you may have noticed, I am a native from a distant continent from yours (and to make things worse, from a specific country within that continent ...) , where software patents are not treated the same way as they are in US, but I won't discuss which system is better, simply because I have no legal background in my cursus. Let's say I have reacted about innovation in general but not "software innovation" in particular


Edited by umrk_lab - 1/19/13 at 6:14am
post #11 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by umrk_lab View Post

 Let's say I have reacted about innovation in general but not "software innovation" in particular

 

Thanks for the clarification, and I understand your point about innovation in general.

 

As for software patents, the fact that many countries don't allow them, should be a strong hint that there's something wrong with their concept.  Even in the US, software patents were pretty much a non-factor until the early 90s.

 

Software development is very different from other kinds of innovation.  Programmers all over the world constantly reinvent what other programmers have done, all without knowing about each other.   And there's no way to stop and research everything a programmer does all day.   Worse, we're seeing patents on what boils down to common gestures, which is like patenting a music chord.   Ah well, don't get me started :)

 

Regards.

post #12 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by KDarling View Post

 

This is about software patent infringement.   Infringement of a software patent rarely involves stealing.  Rather it's usually about coming up with the same idea that someone else managed to get a patent on. ...

 

Except that in this case we absolutely know that not to be the case. It is established beyond debate that Samsung knowingly and intentionally stole from Apple.

 

So, even if we were to assume the truth of your statement above, it's entirely irrelevant.

 

And the thing is, you know that. So, the question is, why would you post what is, in context, willful misrepresentation of fact?

 

And, more importantly, and I've asked this question before, why do "Android supporters" always seem to feel the need to lie to make their points? Sure, some of them are just trolls who don't really care about Android and are only "defending" it here because this is an Apple forum (and maybe you fall into that category, since you've shown yourself to be pretty fast and loose with the truth), but not all of them are. What is it about Google and Android that turns its fans into liars?

post #13 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by anonymouse View Post

 

Except that in this case we absolutely know that not to be the case. It is established beyond debate that Samsung knowingly and intentionally stole from Apple.

 

So, even if we were to assume the truth of your statement above, it's entirely irrelevant.

 

And the thing is, you know that. So, the question is, why would you post what is, in context, willful misrepresentation of fact?

 

And, more importantly, and I've asked this question before, why do "Android supporters" always seem to feel the need to lie to make their points? Sure, some of them are just trolls who don't really care about Android and are only "defending" it here because this is an Apple forum (and maybe you fall into that category, since you've shown yourself to be pretty fast and loose with the truth), but not all of them are. What is it about Google and Android that turns its fans into liars?

Most of the samsung case was about design patents, not software patents. And the few software patents that Apple did charge samsung with, two of them have been pre-invalidated and most of them don't even exist in other countries outside the U.S. SO you should stop lying, and try better reading comprehension. We are dealing with software patents here not rounded shapes and corners, which is another issue into itself. 

post #14 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by Techstalker View Post

Most of the samsung case was about design patents, not software patents. And the few software patents that Apple did charge samsung with, two of them have been pre-invalidated and most of them don't even exist in other countries outside the U.S. SO you should stop lying, and try better reading comprehension. We are dealing with software patents here not rounded shapes and corners, which is another issue into itself. 

 

You again? Which software patents did Samsung violate by developing it independently rather than stealing it? None. So, mister, "Android is fully open source," except when it isn't, the only one lying here are, once again, those on the Android side, who, for some reason, can't seem to make their case without doing so. You still haven't explained how Android is fully open source even though it isn't, so, until you can do that, shove off.

 

You're even misrepresenting what the PTO has done with the patents you are referring to above.


Edited by anonymouse - 1/19/13 at 12:12pm
post #15 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by Techstalker View Post

Most of the samsung case was about design patents, not software patents. And the few software patents that Apple did charge samsung with, two of them have been pre-invalidated and most of them don't even exist in other countries outside the U.S. SO you should stop lying, and try better reading comprehension. We are dealing with software patents here not rounded shapes and corners, which is another issue into itself. 

"pre-invalidated" is meaningless. That's the procedure that MUST be followed any time someone objects to a patent. It says absolutely nothing about whether the patent will be invalidated or not.

As for the rest, classic red herring. Why in the world would it matter in a US court decision whether a patent exists in other countries or not?
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post #16 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by jragosta View Post


"pre-invalidated" is meaningless. That's the procedure that MUST be followed any time someone objects to a patent. It says absolutely nothing about whether the patent will be invalidated or not.

As for the rest, classic red herring. Why in the world would it matter in a US court decision whether a patent exists in other countries or not?

Do you really think it's "meaningless" or instead trying to say that there's not yet been a final determination and therefor the patent's claims are still intact as it arrives in the eyes of the court?  It's not likely that the patents claims will stand as is which make the initial determination by the USPTO hardly meaningless.

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post #17 of 21

If these features don't drive consumer demand it should be easy for Samsung to remove those.

As long as they don't do it, halt the sales; looks easy to me! 1oyvey.gif

post #18 of 21

Quote:

Originally Posted by copeland View Post

If these features don't drive consumer demand it should be easy for Samsung to remove those.

As long as they don't do it, halt the sales; looks easy to me! 1oyvey.gif

 

You've actually summarized a lot of various courts' findings in a couple of sentences!   Here are the details of this particular action (which is a different lawsuit than the famous $1B jury one that started in 2011 and ended last year -- this new lawsuit started Feb 2012)

 

1.  Last June, Judge Koh issued a preliminary injunction for the Nexus over Apple's so-called "universal search" patent.  She did this on the grounds of Apple claiming irreparable harm and her opinion that the patent might be infringed.   Soon after, Samsung removed local search so the Nexus could continue to sell, until this trial starts sometime in mid 2013.

 

2a.  In October, the US Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit (CAFC) found that Koh had "abused her discretion" because Apple's lawyers could not prove that people bought a Nexus (instead of an iPhone) because of its universal quick search box... a feature that most users didn't even know about until after they had bought the Nexus.

 

Since it didn't drive consumer demand, there was no reason to believe that irreparable harm could have occurred even IF the patent is later found to be infringed.  The CAFC remanded the case back to Koh and she removed the injunction.

 

2b.  The three CAFC judges also added their opinion (without being required to) that Apple's claim of infringement was unlikely to succeed anyway.

 

To them, the way that Apple's patent claims were worded, indicated that Samsung's search box did NOT infringe the patent.  (see my previous post about this topic)

 

3.  Apple's lawyers have now asked for an en banc review (that's all nine CAFC judges) of their patent claim construction, in hopes that they might win over other judges.

,

 

Summary:  this is no longer just about an injunction of a now year old phone.  It's about Apple wanting to be able to use their "universal search" patent against Android in the future.  To do that, they first need a higher court to accept a claim construction that would encompass a wider range of implementations.  They'll also likely have to defend its basic validity, which is has been questioned due to many examples of universal search that existed before.


Edited by KDarling - 1/20/13 at 5:29pm
post #19 of 21
kdarling,i don't know where you get your information on software patents getting "going"in 1990's.
Bill Gates microsoft patents were late 70s-early 80's and beyond.
Apple patented the mac OS in 80's/early 90's lawsuits followed quickly. Even thought Xerox PARC owned the rights oops software patents. Oracle, Lotus and others held patents since 70's.
So why the difference today than 20-40 years ago? Attorneys and new profit models for companies.
Innovation by sharing information is less important than capitalization. This is the illness that resulted in world economies being sucked dry by the few "too big to fail" corporations with no reprocussions to the corporate executives.
post #20 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by ronf57 View Post

kdarling,i don't know where you get your information on software patents getting "going"in 1990's.
Bill Gates microsoft patents were late 70s-early 80's and beyond.

Microsoft got it's first software patent in 1988, not back in the '70's, This is it by the way if you're curious:

http://www.google.com/patents?vid=USPAT4779187&id=VIMDAAAAEBAJ&dq=4,779,187

Even if you were talking MS patents in general, their very first patent of any kind was received in 1986 to protect a piece of hardware that held books/documents open.

http://www.google.com/patents?vid=USPAT4588074&id=i4szAAAAEBAJ&dq=4,588,074

 

In the 60's the USPTO simply would not issue a patent if "the invention used a calculation made by a computer". In the 1970's both times the issue of software patentability reached the Supreme Court the ruling was negative. In the 80's the Supreme Court made yet another ruling involving a software patent, this one on a process for "curing rubber" and muddied the waters a bit by allowing it. It wasn't until the 1990's that a couple of Federal Court decisions (Lowry, State Steet Bank/Signature Financial) clarified conflicting issues and made nearly all software innovations potentially patentable.

 

So yes, software patents really got going in the '90's. 


Edited by Gatorguy - 1/22/13 at 4:16am
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post #21 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by ronf57 View Post

kdarling,i don't know where you get your information on software patents getting "going"in 1990's.
Bill Gates microsoft patents were late 70s-early 80's and beyond.
Apple patented the mac OS in 80's/early 90's lawsuits followed quickly. Even thought Xerox PARC owned the rights oops software patents. Oracle, Lotus and others held patents since 70's.

 

I got my information by living through those times as a software developer :)

 

You're basically confusing patents, copyrights, and trademarks.   It's okay, people do that.

 

Until the 1990s, everyone relied mostly on copyrights to protect their code implementation, and copyrights / trademarks / trade dress to protect their visuals.   This worked fine for most programs, games, you name it.

 

Quote:
So why the difference today than 20-40 years ago? Attorneys and new profit models for companies.

 

Many people believe it started with the Apple - Microsoft - Xerox lawsuits at the beginning of the 90s.   Apple found that trademarks weren't enough to stop Microsoft Windows, and Xerox found that copyrights were not enough to get credit for their GUI work.   Thus, a move to patents.

 

Quote:
Innovation by sharing information is less important than capitalization. This is the illness that resulted in world economies being sucked dry by the few "too big to fail" corporations with no reprocussions to the corporate executives.
 
I think you have some good points.
 
It's interesting that the EU struck down an attempt in 2005 to allow software patents.   The argument was that software patents actually inhibit innovation, and thus are a detriment to the public interest.
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