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There’s a lot at stake in Apple Inc.’s landmark patent infringement trial against Samsung Electronics Co. that started Tuesday. Apple is seeking a whopping $2.5 billion from Samsung for allegedly stealing features of the iPad and iPhone. (Our affiliate, The Recorder, has a summary of Tuesday’s court proceedings here.) But even if the jury awards Apple that much money, the company would likely face an uphill battle making the award stick. As recent high-profile patent trials have shown, big awards often evaporate or shrink drastically in post-trial motions and appeals. “Most of the big verdicts don’t stand. Something alway happens to them,” said Paul Janicke, an intellectual property professor at the University of Houston Law Center who is faculty coordinator of patstats.org, which monitors patent infringement damage awards. He noted that despite some outsized awards recently, the average jury verdict damage award has hovered around $7 million for the past five years. He added that statistics on the amount of money that ultimately changes hands after these trials is hard to track because so many of these cases settle confidentially. (You can view patstats.org’s data here. ) For example:

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