eDiscovery Daily Blog

At Long Last, Apple v. Samsung is Finally Over: eDiscovery Trends

Without a doubt, the case that has generated more eDiscovery Daily blog posts than any other over our nearly eight years of existence has been the Apple v. Samsung case.  We published at least fifteen posts regarding the case since 2012 (click here to search our blog for “Samsung” and the first fifteen posts are about the case) and could have easily published more – if there were more notable eDiscovery issues to discuss.  Now, finally – quietly – it’s all over.

In this Legaltech News article (Apple and Samsung Call a Truce in Long-Running Smartphone War, written by Scott Graham), the author notes that lawyers for Apple Inc. and Samsung Electronics Co. informed U.S. District Judge Lucy Koh of the Northern District of California on Wednesday that “they have agreed to drop and settle their remaining claims and counterclaims in this matter.”  Terms of the settlement were not disclosed.

Koh, who has presided over four trials between the parties, wasted no time, entering an order of dismissal minutes later.

The agreement comes a month after a damages retrial that ended in a $538 million award for Apple. Although Samsung had persuaded the U.S. Supreme Court to adopt a more favorable rule on lost profits in design patent cases, the amount was roughly $140 million more than awarded against Samsung for design patent damages following the parties’ first two trials, in 2012 and 2013. (It was, however, $238 million less than the total originally awarded for patent design and trade dress dilution across all infringing products).

Samsung had vowed to appeal, and also was seeking to claw back $145 million awarded at the first trial on a utility patent that has since been invalidated by the Patent Trial and Appeal Board.  However, the parties have also since been conducting settlement talks, though the details—including who’s been presiding over them—have remained secret.

The first jury that heard the case, in 2012, awarded Apple $1.049 billion for infringement of design and utility patents and for trade dress dilution.  Over the years, the award was revised a number of times and the award dispute even made it to the Supreme Court, where SCOTUS told the federal appeals court to take another look at the $399 million award won by Apple.  This case had it all – adverse inference instruction sanctions on both sides and, of course, the “patentgate” disclosure (by Samsung and their outside counsel firm of Quinn Emanuel Urquhart & Sullivan LLP) of confidential agreements that Apple had with Nokia (which cost Samsung and Quinn Emanuel a $2 million sanction).

Now, it’s all over.  We think.

What would you think if I sang out of tune, would you stand up and walk out on me?  Since I’m a blog writer and not a singer, it’s a moot point, but – just like John Lennon (and Joe Cocker) – I get by with a little help from my friends.  Thanks to Tom O’Connor for his Litigate or Settle? Info You Need to Make Case Decisions white paper last week and to Jim Gill for his post about facial recognition software in airports, I was able to take a week off with my family last week and we were able to give you fresh new posts instead of re-run posts like we have done in past years.  Thanks guys!

So, what do you think?  Will we see a “battle of titans” like Apple v. Samsung again anytime soon?  Please let us know if any comments you might have or if you’d like to know more about a particular topic.

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Disclaimer: The views represented herein are exclusively the views of the author, and do not necessarily represent the views held by CloudNine. eDiscovery Daily is made available by CloudNine solely for educational purposes to provide general information about general eDiscovery principles and not to provide specific legal advice applicable to any particular circumstance. eDiscovery Daily should not be used as a substitute for competent legal advice from a lawyer you have retained and who has agreed to represent you.