The legal front in the smartphone wars between Apple and Samsung picked up steam yesterday after a jury awarded both sides some cash in a patent infringement fight.
The jury ordered Samsung to pay Apple $119.6 million in damages, far short of the $2.2 billion Apple had been seeking, and less than the $930 million Apple was awarded in an earlier trial in the same courtroom.
The same jury ruled Friday that Apple infringed on one Samsung patent and awarded Samsung $158,400.
So who actually won? There are many interpretations. The first is that Apple did. In court. Yesterday.
However, Apple probably spent nearly as much loot waging the case against Samsung, which runs on Google software, than it was ultimately awarded by the courts. Also, looking at the bigger picture, the lawsuit was intended to stem the momentum of Apple's smartphone foes. Given the huge amount that Apple sought as well as a sales injunction, which was denied, one legal expert saw Samsung as the winner here.
Apple launched this litigation campaign years ago with aspirations of slowing the meteoric rise of Android phone manufacturers. It has so far failed to do so, and this case won’t get it any closer.”
Farhad Manjoo, who knows a thing or two about hopping from rival sides, added that Samsung's decision to mimic Apple was a long-term winning strategy.
"Of the 3 paths open to rivals—ignore Apple, out-innovate Apple, or copy Apple—Samsung’s decision has fared best." http://t.co/eeyOqjnsDg— Farhad Manjoo (@fmanjoo) May 3, 2014
Who else won here? We did. The royal consumer, that is.
The trial result is a validation that consumers today can choose from more phones, with more sophistication and more kinds of designs and features, than ever before. When you look at an iPhone 5S and a Samsung Galaxy S5, you can see the two phones share the same roots, but they're completely different devices.