Apple Inc. was finally able to claim a victory against Samsung Electronics in a patent battle when a US court ruled in favor of the iPhone maker and ordered the South Korean giant to stop using its software in the US market, which aids mobile phones in infringing on Apple’s patents. According to the ruling by San Jose’s US District Court, Samsung has to stop developing, making, using, designing or selling software or code, which aids its products in infringing on three patents. Various features of smartphones are covered in those inventions that include slide-to-unlock, autocorrect and data detection.
The two smartphone giants have been embroiled in legal battles with each other and have pursued cases all over the world. In all of them, both claim that the other has infringed upon their devices. However, none of these battles bore any fruit due to which they mutually arrived at the decision to drop all cases in 2014 with the exception of two that were lodged in California’s federal court, which issued the order on Monday. The ruling made by the court has an impact on the code or software used in older models of Samsung phones such as the Galaxy S II, S III and Note smartphones as well.
According to patent experts, the US courts didn’t take any sides and decided to help both companies through their decision. Samsung’s mobile business will only have to deal with a minimum impact because most of the models that are banned are old ones while it also grants greater negotiating power to Apple in regard to other patent cases against its rival. The court stated that the order will be enforced within 30 days. No comments were made by Apple Inc. Samsung, on the other hand, said that it was immensely disappointed.
The South Korean smartphone manufacturer said that even though American consumers wouldn’t be affected much by this decision, it sets another example of Apple’s abuse of the judicial system for creating bad legal precedent and this can end up harming consumer choice for future generations. The disputes between the business partners and rivals have been ongoing for years and are focused on software-design features that lots of smartphone users now take for granted. While older models are covered by the injunction, it is possible that the Cupertino, California based firm may go back to the judge and argue that same patents are also infringed by newer models.
Statistics indicate that about one third of the smartphones shipped worldwide are done by Samsung and Apple combined. The chips and displays used in Apple devices come from Samsung. In September, Apple had also won a US appeals court ruling that could influence how disputes will be resolved from now on in the case of complex devices and could also assist patent owners in preventing copying by competitors. Samsung attempted to get the appeals court decision overturned, but it was unsuccessful. It received the support of LG Electronics Inc., Google Inc., Rackspace Hosting Inc., and HTC Corp.