Gah, there are so many bloomin’ Apple/Samsung courtroom saga stories in our archives that I’m struggling to find the relevant wordage. I know it’s here somewhere…
Aha! Around 10 days ago I was saying that Samsung had mysteriously dropped its injunction request against Apple in Europe, but it might be too little too late. See, the latest chapter in the never-ending saga suggests Samsung could be fined almost $15 billion for patent abuse.
Essentially, Samsung has a bunch of “standard essential” patents, and it’s obliged under EU ruleage to license them under FRAND (fair, reasonable and non-discriminatory) terms.
In the case that the parties (in this case Apple and Samsung, “obvs”) can’t agree on a fee, the court - ideally - is s’posed to step in and mediate.
However, instead of working things out like reasonable peeps, Apple and Samsung have been cranking the litigation with a view to getting various devices banned.
This doesn’t sit well with the European commission, which ultimately suspects that Samsung has been abusing the standard essential patents in question.
In the worst case, the European commission could fine Samsung up to 10% of its global – yes, global – annual turnover, which amounts to almost $15 billion. Good lord.
On withdrawing the injunction requests, the South Koreans purred: “Samsung remains committed to licensing our technologies on fair, reasonable and non-discriminatory terms, and we strongly believe it is better when companies compete fairly in the marketplace, rather than in court.
“In this spirit, Samsung has decided to withdraw our injunction requests against Apple on the basis of our standard essential patents pending in European courts, in the interest of protecting consumer choice."
In other slightly-less-interesting news, Apple has agreed to drop it’s Samsung Galaxy S III Mini-related gripes over in the states, since the handset won’t be released there.
Samsung says it ain’t “making, using, selling, offering to sell or importing the Galaxy S III Mini in the United States.”
The Californians have agreed to back down, on the understanding that doing so does “not prejudice Apple’s ability later to accuse the Galaxy S III Mini if the factual circumstances change.”
Oh, you two. Here’s to zero new courtroom dramas in 2013. Right? Guys?
via: The Guardian