Samsung attorney Bill Price said Apple has tried to show its patents cover all aspects of design and ease of use, preventing companies from making “attractive” devices that are easy to use. However, the patents are limited, he argued, which is why Samsung should only pay Apple $52 million for patent infringement, not the $380 million Apple has requested.
“Apple has tried to mischaracterize these patents so they are the iPhone,” Price said during closing arguments in a court here. But “these patents are very narrow…Apple doesn’t own beautiful and sexy.”
He added that while Samsung knew it needed to alter its devices to compete with the iPhone,Apple has done the same thing with new devices like the iPad Mini.
“There’s nothing wrong with looking at your competitors and changing what you do because of it,” Price said.
And people seek out Samsung’s devices because of Android, bigger screens, and other features, not because of Apple’s patented technology, he said.
“Did you hear any evidence that anyone bought any of these phones because of the Apple patents?” Price asked. “What they’re really saying in the market is ‘justice’ is ‘just us.”
Meanwhile, Apple attorney Bill Lee argued that Samsung’s patent infringement significantly harmed the company and that the electronics giant deserves an additional $380 million for that damage. He noted that Samsung’s copycat tactics helped it gain significant market share while other rivals struggled. And he said the patent infringement set back Apple.
“Apple can never get back to where it should have been in 2010,” Lee said Tuesday during his closing arguments.
A jury last year determined Samsung had infringed on five patents related to the iPhone’s design and functionality. A judge earlier this year vacated about $450 million of the original award and ordered a new jury to convene to recalculate the damages for patent infringement. Samsung is still on the hook for about $600 million, but Apple is asking for $380 million more. Samsung believes it only owes Apple $52 million.
Samsung sold 10.7 million infringing devices, generating $3.5 billion in revenue.
Price and Lee made the comments during a retrial in the United States District Court for the Northern District of California. A new jury of eight people — six women and two men — has been assembled to determine the new damages total for Samsung’s patent infringement.
The retrial kicked off last Tuesday with jury selection, followed by opening arguments Wednesday. Witnesses who took the stand included Phil Schiller, Apple’s head of marketing, and several expert witnesses who calculated the total damages owed.
For most, the damages retrial was a case of “Groundhog Day.” No new revelations emerged during the testimony, and most witnesses also took the stand during the last trial more than a year ago. Apple’s witnesses argued Samsung’s copycat devices hurt the company, while Samsung argued that people seek out its devices more for their differences than similarities to Apple gadgets.
Not at issue in this case is whether Samsung infringed Apple’s patents. The judge instructed the jury that a previous jury already decided Samsung infringed, and that they shouldn’t revisit that issue. The sole consideration in the retrial is money — just how much Samsung owes Apple for infringing its patents.
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