Samsung patent review may undermine $533M Smartflash verdict against Apple

Posted:
in General Discussion edited April 2015
Samsung has asked the US Patent and Trademark Office to review two Smartflash patents, a move that could potentially absolve Apple of paying $532.9 million in damages following a Smartflash court victory in February.




Like Apple, Samsung is facing a Smartflash lawsuit over patents connected to data storage and payment systems, which in Apple's case brought iAd, iOS, the iTunes Store, and the Mac and iOS App Stores under scrutiny. Samsung is asking the USPTO to determine whether or not two of the patents are invalid, Bloomberg said on Friday.

Earlier this week a patent agency review board issued preliminary findings against the patents, contending that they cover abstract concepts instead of definite inventions. Their fate will ultimately be decided by a panel of judges hearing arguments from both Samsung and Smartflash.

The latter is likely to lose out in the decision. Last year the US Supreme Court ruled that simply having a computer perform a business function doesn't constitute a new invention, which in tandem with this week's preliminary review may set a clear precedent.

Should the case not be dimissed or settled beforehand, Samsung is facing an August trial date. In all the USPTO is reviewing five out of six patents being wielded in the Smartflash lawsuits -- a Samsung petition to invalidate the third patent in Apple's case is awaiting action.

Apple is in the process of appealing the February verdict. It may need to stretch out proceedings, however, if it wants to wait for the USPTO ruling to be handed down.

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 7
    cpsrocpsro Posts: 2,488member

    Q: Why did Samsung request the patent review instead of Apple?

    A: In its agreement to supply Apple with flash storage, Samsung may have also agreed to indemnify Apple for any liability over patent infringement.

  • Reply 2 of 7
    gatorguygatorguy Posts: 21,106member
    cpsro wrote: »
    Q: Why did Samsung request the patent review instead of Apple?
    A: In its agreement to supply Apple with flash storage, Samsung may have also agreed to indemnify Apple for any liability over patent infringement.
    Samsung is being sued. As for Samsung indemnifying Apple I don't why. The supposedly offending Apple features are related to payment systems so at least some if not all of the patent claims are not specific to basic flash functions.
  • Reply 3 of 7
    tooltalktooltalk Posts: 766member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Cpsro View Post

     

    Q: Why did Samsung request the patent review instead of Apple?

    A: In its agreement to supply Apple with flash storage, Samsung may have also agreed to indemnify Apple for any liability over patent infringement.


     

     

    "Samsung didn’t file the petitions to save Apple -- its own fight with Smartflash is scheduled for an August trial in Tyler, Texas, though Samsung may ask that it be put off until the patent office completes the reviews. In the suit, Tyler-based Smartflash claims Samsung’s Media Hub uses the technology without paying royalties."

     

    "In all, six Smartflash patents were asserted against both Apple and Samsung. The patent office has already agreed to review five of them. Some were based on Apple petitions, and the most recent on Samsung petitions. A Samsung petition to invalidate the third patent involved in the Apple case is still pending."

     

    it's all in there. 

  • Reply 4 of 7
    idreyidrey Posts: 640member
    My enemy's enemy is my friend! Did not see that comming
  • Reply 5 of 7
    chris_cachris_ca Posts: 2,543member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Cpsro View Post

     

    Q: Why did Samsung request the patent review instead of Apple?

    A: In its agreement to supply Apple with flash storage, Samsung may have also agreed to indemnify Apple for any liability over patent infringement.


    Flash storage chips/memory have nothing to do with the patent issues.

  • Reply 6 of 7
    davidwdavidw Posts: 975member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Gatorguy View Post





    Samsung is being sued. As for Samsung indemnifying Apple I don't why. The supposedly offending Apple features are related to payment systems so at least some if not all of the patent claims are not specific to basic flash functions.

     

    Chances are, Samsung wants to head off any suit by SmartFlash against their own Samsung Pay. If Apple has to pay royalty for using the SmartFlash patent in their ApplePay, then chances are slim that Samsung would win a case against SmartFlash if they were to sue them for infringing on the same patent with Samsung Pay. So the best hope now, for Apple and Samsung is to invalidate that patent. 

     

    If anybody is indemnifying anybody, it might be Samsung indemnifying Google, if the patent in question is actually part of Android. By giving away Android for free, Google washes it's hands of any patent infringements (for Android) and it's up to the phone manufacturers that puts Android on their phones to pay any royalties and licenses that may be owed. Just like how they have to pay Microsoft, rumored to be about $8 per Android phone sold for supposedly infringing on some of Microsoft software patents.

  • Reply 7 of 7
    adamcadamc Posts: 576member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by DavidW View Post

     

     

    Chances are, Samsung wants to head off any suit by SmartFlash against their own Samsung Pay. If Apple has to pay royalty for using the SmartFlash patent in their ApplePay, then chances are slim that Samsung would win a case against SmartFlash if they were to sue them for infringing on the same patent with Samsung Pay. So the best hope now, for Apple and Samsung is to invalidate that patent. 

     

    If anybody is indemnifying anybody, it might be Samsung indemnifying Google, if the patent in question is actually part of Android. By giving away Android for free, Google washes it's hands of any patent infringements (for Android) and it's up to the phone manufacturers that puts Android on their phones to pay any royalties and licenses that may be owed. Just like how they have to pay Microsoft, rumored to be about $8 per Android phone sold for supposedly infringing on some of Microsoft software patents.




    I don't get it why should google be indemnified, it is not being sued by Smartflash.

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