Chinese court overturns patent ruling, enabling continued iPhone 6 sales by Apple

Posted:
in iPhone edited March 2017
The Intellectual Property Court in Beijing has overturned a ruling that found Apple violated a patent belonging to a Chinese tech firm, Shenzhen Baili -- and in the process, removed the threat of a city-wide ban on iPhone 6 and 6 Plus sales.




In summer 2016, the Beijing Intellectual Property Office found that Apple had copied the exterior of a Baili smartphone -- the 100C -- through design traits like curved edges and rounded corners, Agence France-Presse noted on Saturday. Sales were allowed to continue temporarily while Apple's appeal was underway.

The 100C patent dates back to March 2014, around the time leaked images of the iPhone 6 began to emerge. Baili has sometimes been accused of simply copying those leaks to beat the iPhone 6 design to market, something which it denies.

Baili filed suit against Apple in Dec. 2014, but by the time of the IPO decision, both it and its parent company had become insolvent. The IPO nevertheless issued the suspended sales injunction against Apple.

In its appeal, Apple argued that the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus included 13 technical differences with the 100C, and that the average shopper could "easily" distinguish between the phones.

Apple has sometimes had a rough experience with the Chinese patent and trademark system, for instance having to pay out $60 million to settle an iPad trademark dispute.

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 12
    Rayz2016Rayz2016 Posts: 4,591member
    And all it cost was setting up a new "research centre" in China. 

    FatmanEsquireCatsMal_RRacerhomieXlkruppwatto_cobra
  • Reply 2 of 12
    Curved edges and rounded corners? That sounds like almost every smartphone in existence. If that's the case, Apple should be suing everyone who even remotely copied the original iPhone. Actually, from the side view, that 100C has similar but thinner lines to the first iPhone. Oh, well, they already tried that with Samsung and the courts also gave Apple no satisfaction. Boy, oh boy... Apple is everyone's first target for trying to get some free cash. The 100C has no antenna lines and the flash placement is different from the 6s.
    Mal_RRacerhomieXwatto_cobra
  • Reply 3 of 12
    jony0jony0 Posts: 269member
    Wow, is this a first ?
    Is this the first court case in Apple's favour in China ?
    Is this the first time a foreign company has won a court case against a Chinese company in China ?
    I honestly don't know and frankly don't care enough to research it. And if you picked up a hint of cynicism in the questions you would be correct.
    edited March 2017 Mal_Rwatto_cobra
  • Reply 4 of 12
    SpamSandwichSpamSandwich Posts: 31,087member
    Just another scammer looking for a payoff most likely.
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 5 of 12
    FatmanFatman Posts: 290member
    Apple, the inventor of the modern smartphone in its current form has to deal with these cheating, immoral a-holes by paying off the government and investing in their backwards country. I guess it's Karma, US companies handed China it's IP & blueprints, technical production know how, and factories in exchange for slave labor. And Karma swings back the other way as China poisons itself in their own pollution. Apple needs to start building robot factories in the US now - it won't bring too many jobs but at least it can bring control back and end the blackmail.
    Mal_RRacerhomieXwatto_cobra
  • Reply 6 of 12
    foggyhillfoggyhill Posts: 4,767member
    Fatman said:
    Apple, the inventor of the modern smartphone in its current form has to deal with these cheating, immoral a-holes by paying off the government and investing in their backwards country. I guess it's Karma, US companies handed China it's IP & blueprints, technical production know how, and factories in exchange for slave labor. And Karma swings back the other way as China poisons itself in their own pollution. Apple needs to start building robot factories in the US now - it won't bring too many jobs but at least it can bring control back and end the blackmail.
    When the price is right they'll do it, but there is a crapload of supply chain that Apple doesn't control that isn't coming back though. They could do final assembly tough I guess.
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 7 of 12
    MacProMacPro Posts: 18,215member
    Fatman said:
    Apple, the inventor of the modern smartphone in its current form has to deal with these cheating, immoral a-holes by paying off the government and investing in their backwards country. I guess it's Karma, US companies handed China it's IP & blueprints, technical production know how, and factories in exchange for slave labor. And Karma swings back the other way as China poisons itself in their own pollution. Apple needs to start building robot factories in the US now - it won't bring too many jobs but at least it can bring control back and end the blackmail.
    I just hope Apple's robots look like Battlestar Galactica's :)

    edited March 2017 watto_cobra
    640.jpg 22.7K
  • Reply 8 of 12
    Looks like all that effort in PRC by TC paying off.
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 9 of 12
    melgrossmelgross Posts: 31,647member
    Curved edges and rounded corners? That sounds like almost every smartphone in existence. If that's the case, Apple should be suing everyone who even remotely copied the original iPhone. Actually, from the side view, that 100C has similar but thinner lines to the first iPhone. Oh, well, they already tried that with Samsung and the courts also gave Apple no satisfaction. Boy, oh boy... Apple is everyone's first target for trying to get some free cash. The 100C has no antenna lines and the flash placement is different from the 6s.
    Apple had 32 lawsuits against Samsung worldwide. They won all but three, and two of those losses was in S Korea, though they did even win one there.

    the "rectangle with rounded corners" was a phrase invented by Samsung's German lawyers in a case about the iPad. They claimed that the Samsung model differed so much from the iPad, that it could easy be told apart. They coined that phrase in that case.

    while the iPad had a 3:2 screen, and the Samsung a 16:9 screen, when the judge held both up to the lawyers, from ten feet away, they couldn't tell which was which, and lost the lawsuit.

    apple invented the shape and look of the modern tablet. Before the ipad, tablets looked entirely different. They patented that with a design patent, which has always been considered to be legit, and has a concept that goes way back.

    in addition, it should be known that Apple is not the company with the most design patents, Samsung is. Apple is also not the company that sues most over their design patents. Samsung is. Apple is also not the company that gets sued the most about using other companies design patents (they almost never are), Samsung is.

    that's really it in a nutshell.

    heres an example of why the iPad was so different, and why Apple was right to patent and defend it.

    http://www.cultofmac.com/109373/what-tablets-looked-like-before-the-ipad-proves-how-revolutionary-apples-tablet-really-was/
    elijahgStrangeDayswatto_cobra
  • Reply 10 of 12
    melgrossmelgross Posts: 31,647member
    I'd like to make the point that Apple has been trying to invalidate these patents, unsuccessfully. This decision, which was from an appeals court, refused to do that for Apple. It's not known whether Apple will pursue this to a higher court. So Apple had a partial win here.

    and making statements here about how terrible this all is isn't that simple. If Apple didn't apply for design patents there, but this company did, then that's Apple's fault.
    edited March 2017
  • Reply 11 of 12
    eriamjheriamjh Posts: 1,121member
    A symbolic victory, at least.   I don't think the ruling hampered Apple profits or sales in any way.
  • Reply 12 of 12
    tokyojimutokyojimu Posts: 417member
    Some day China will shut Apple down. Just as they do with all foreign companies threatening to take too much business from domestic competitors: YouTube, Facebook, Google, Twitter, Instagram, and now Pinterest. 
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