EditorsAbout the SiteComes vs. MicrosoftUsing This Web SiteSite ArchivesCredibility IndexOOXMLOpenDocumentPatentsNovellNews DigestSite NewsRSS

11.07.17

The US Supreme Court (SCOTUS) Lets Apple Have Its Way and Refuses to Reassess Design and Software Patents

Posted in Apple, Patents, Samsung at 7:01 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

If Apple had a monopoly on apples, it would strive to ‘own’ peaches, too

Some peaces

Summary: In another ongoing case implicating Samsung and Apple the Justices who inadvertently lay the ground for patent law refuse to intervene

Samsung and Apple have several concurrent legal disputes which can wind up with SCOTUS eliminating entire families of patents. As it turns out, however, this case just wasn’t to be. SCOTUS refuses to deal with this case which is involving design patents. There was a good aspect to it in 2014 (software patents), namely that of perpetuating Alice rather than overriding it in any way. As The Register‘s Andrew Silver put it yesterday evening:

Samsung seems to have trouble accepting reality when it comes to a long-running patent spat with Apple.

The US Supreme Court today declined to hear another appeal of a May 2014 verdict awarding Apple $119.6m for Samsung’s alleged infringement of software patents including “quick links”, Reuters reports.

An eight-person jury first sided with Apple in May 2014.

[...]

Samsung decided to take its case to the Supreme Court, arguing that there were procedural issues. Evidently the justices disagree.

Ars Technica‘s Mullin has already covered this too, recalling that patents on “smartphone autocorrect and “slide to unlock” were invalid in light of prior art.”

But this one is about design patents, not software patents. And the focus is the level of ‘damages’:

News today concerns the second verdict. In 2016, the $120 million verdict was thrown out entirely by a panel of judges on the US Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit, which hears all patent appeals. The judges said that patents on Apple features like smartphone autocorrect and “slide to unlock” were invalid in light of prior art.

[...]

The infringed patents in this case include US Patent Nos. 8,046,721 (slide-to-unlock), 8,074,172 (word correction), and 5,946,647 (quick links). The ’647 “quick links” patent, which describes a process for turning structures such as addresses and phone numbers into easily clickable links, accounted for nearly $100 million of the damages award.

[...]

As for that first verdict, it has gone up and down through appeals courts many times, significantly lowering the damages figure in the process. Right now, it’s getting lined up for another jury trial to reconsider $399 million in damages. The US Supreme Court said that the method used to calculate damages on design patents, the biggest part of the verdict, was improper.

This case does not concern software directly; still, we were hoping that design patents too would be challenged. These patents are an overkill when copyright and trademark laws already cover designs to a certain — and likely sufficient — degree.

Share this post: These icons link to social bookmarking sites where readers can share and discover new web pages.
  • Digg
  • del.icio.us
  • Reddit
  • co.mments
  • DZone
  • email
  • Google Bookmarks
  • LinkedIn
  • NewsVine
  • Print
  • Technorati
  • TwitThis
  • Facebook

If you liked this post, consider subscribing to the RSS feed or join us now at the IRC channels.

Pages that cross-reference this one

What Else is New


  1. Links 13/8/2018: Linux 4.18 and GNU Linux-libre 4.18 Arrive

    Links for the day



  2. PTAB is Loathed by Patent Maximalists Because It Can Potentially Invalidate Thousands of Software Patents (More Than Courts Can Handle)

    The US patent system has become more resistant to software patents; courts, however, are still needed to invalidate such patents (a potentially expensive process) because the USPTO continues to grant these provided some fashionable buzzwords/hype waves are utilised (e.g. "facial recognition", "blockchain", "autonomous vehicles")



  3. Gene Quinn and 'Dallas Innovates' as Couriers of Agenda for Patent Trolls Like iPEL

    Failing to hide their real purpose and malicious agenda, sites whose real purpose is to promote a lot of patent litigation produce puff pieces, even for patently unethical trolls such as iPEL



  4. Software Patents, Secured by 'Smart' and 'Intelligent' Tricks, Help Microsoft and Others Bypass Alice/Section 101

    A look at the use of fashionable trends and buzzwords to acquire and pass around dubious software patents, then attempting to guard these from much-needed post-Alice scrutiny



  5. Keep Boston (and Massachusetts in General) From Becoming an Infestation Zone for Patent Litigation

    Boston, renowned for research and innovation, has become somewhat of a litigation hotbed; this jeopardises the state's attractiveness (except perhaps to lawyers)



  6. Links 12/8/2018: Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, Mesa 18.1.6 Release Notice, New Linux Imminent

    Links for the day



  7. Thomas Massie's “Restoring America’s Leadership in Innovation Act of 2018” (RALIA) Would Put the US Patent System in the Lions' (or Trolls') Mouth Again

    An anti-§ 101 and anti-PTAB bill from Rep. Thomas Massie (R-KY) strives to remove quality control; but by handing the system back to patent trolls he and his proponents simply strive to create more business of litigation, at the expense of innovation



  8. EPO-Style Problem-Solution: Tackling Backlog by Granting Lots of Low-Quality (Bogus) European Patents, Causing a Surge in Troll/Frivolous Litigation

    The EPO's lack of interest in genuine patent quality (measuring "quality" in terms of speed, not actual quality) may mean nothing but a litigation epidemic; many of these lawsuits would be abusive, baseless; those harmed the most would be small businesses that cannot afford a legal defense and would rather settle with those who exploit questionable patents, notably patent trolls



  9. Links 11/8/2018: PGP Clean Room 1.0, Ring-KDE 3.0.0, Julia 1.0

    Links for the day



  10. Propaganda Sites of Patent Trolls and Litigators Have Quit Trying to Appear Impartial or Having Integrity

    The lobbying groups of patent trolls (which receive money from such trolls) carry on meddling in policy and altering perception that drives policy; we present some new examples



  11. Months After Oil States the Patent Maximalists Still Try to Undermine Inter Partes Reviews (“IPRs”), Refusing to Accept Patent Quality

    The patent maximalists in the United States, seeing that the USPTO is moving away from patent maximalism, is desperate for a turnaround; prominent patent maximalists take it all out on PTAB



  12. The Unified Patent Court (UPC) Agreement is Paralysed, So Team UPC is Twisting Old News

    Paralysis of the Unified Patent Court Agreement (UPCA) means that people are completely forgetting about its very existence; those standing to benefit from it (patent litigation firms) are therefore recycling and distorting old news



  13. Patents as Profiteering Opportunities for Law Firms Rather Than Drivers of Innovation for Productive Companies

    A sample of news from yesterday; the patent microcosm is still arguing about who pays attorneys’ fees (not whether these fees are justified) and is constantly complaining about the decline in patent litigation, which means fewer and lower attorneys’ fees (less work for them)



  14. Links 9/8/2018: Mesa 18.2 RC2, Cockpit 175, WPA-2 Hash Cracking

    Links for the day



  15. Patent Maximalists -- Not Reformers -- Are the Biggest Threat to the Viability of the Patent System and Innovation

    Those who strive to infinitely expand patent scope are rendering the patent system obsolete and completely losing sight of the very purpose of the patent system, whose sanity US courts and lawmakers gradually restore (one ruling and one bill at a time)



  16. WeMove.EU Tackles Low Patent Quality at the European Patent Office (EPO)

    The breadth of European Patents, which now cover even nature itself, worries public interest groups; Team UPC, however, wants patent scope to expand further and António Campinos has expressed his intention to further increase the number of grants



  17. Links 8/8/2018: KDE Neon for Testing, New LibreOffice Release, Dart 2.0

    Links for the day



  18. Links 7/8/2018: TCP Vulnerability in Linux, Speck Crypto Code Candidate for Removal

    Links for the day



  19. PTAB Needs to Expand and Become More Accessible to More Challengers of Wrongly-Granted Patents

    Challenges to US patents at the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) are helping to raise the bar for litigators; those who value the quality of patents should welcome rather than condemn PTAB and PTAB ought to be expanded to facilitate more scrutiny of granted patents



  20. Supreme Court and Federal Circuit Precedents Might Make District Courts (Outside Texas) More Sceptical of Patents

    As patent lawsuits scatter around the United States (not as concentrated around Texas anymore) there's a real chance of turnaround in terms of outcomes; we look at some recent cases



  21. The Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit (CAFC) is Cleaning Up the United States' Patent System

    The highest patent court (bar the US Supreme Court, SCOTUS) is rejecting a lot of patents, not only software patents; this is long overdue and is bad news to patent lawyers (not to companies that actually create and sell things)



  22. Racing to the Bottom, the António Campinos-Led EPO Continues to Promote Software Patents, Just Like China

    The EPO is being transformed into 'SIPO Europe', a dangerous gamble which would leave European firms more susceptible to frivolous litigation and generally reduce the value of previously-much-coveted European Patents



  23. Arista Shows How ITC Injustice (Embargo Before Facts Are Even Known) Harms Smaller Businesses, Helps Monopolists

    Arista Networks Inc. (Arista) has just given up, but only after years of legal bullying from Cisco, which imposed embargoes using questionable patents that should never have been granted by the USPTO



  24. Links 6/8/2018: Linux 4.18 RC8, Pinguy OS 18.04.1, Netrunner Rolling 2018.08, Thunderbird 60

    Links for the day



  25. Playing With Words and Buzzwords in a Landscape of Software Patents Rejections

    The efforts to get patents on software granted nowadays increasingly rely on synonyms and vague/nebulous buzzwords, such as "AI"; examiners ought to be aware of this because PTAB and courts would almost definitely reject all of these patents



  26. Jury Trials and Apple's Latest Bitter Affair With Patents

    Almost 150 million dollars to WiLAN, Canada's largest patent troll, owing to another jury trial in California



  27. Agenda and Lies From Watchtroll Make It Into the Bill of Rohrabacher, the “Inventor Protection Act”

    The Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) is being demonised using falsehoods or patently false numbers, which are pushed into various news feeds by the anti-PTAB lobby (representing the interests of patent trolls and aggressors as well as their lawyers)



  28. Attributing Negligible Differences to Whatever Suits the Loudest Opponents of the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB)

    The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) has limited/restricted patent grants based on 35 U.S.C. § 101, adding to a number of factors which contribute to statistics in litigation and appeals; but the anti-PTAB lobby wants us to believe that there's a resurgence for patent maximalism (the very opposite of what's really happening)



  29. The Anti-PTAB Lobby Still Predicting Doom and Gloom, as Usual, Despite PTAB's Year-Over-Year Growth

    A gradual increase in the number of inter partes reviews (IPRs) in spite of fee hikes; the anti-PTAB lobby is still latching onto anything it can in search of scandals, trying to discourage filers



  30. Understanding of Microsoft’s Patent Strategy Requires Scrutiny of the Patent Trolls It's Connected to

    As Microsoft's strategy appears to be arming patent trolls and then selling 'protection' from them we must still keep abreast of the actions of Microsoft-connected trolls and especially their lawsuits (because these are visible)


CoPilotCo

RSS 64x64RSS Feed: subscribe to the RSS feed for regular updates

Home iconSite Wiki: You can improve this site by helping the extension of the site's content

Home iconSite Home: Background about the site and some key features in the front page

Chat iconIRC Channel: Come and chat with us in real time

CoPilotCo

Recent Posts