If the verdict
obtained Friday against
in their smartphone and tablet trial isn’t chopped down in post-trial motions or on appeal, it will stand as the largest patent verdict in history.
But the big question on the mind of a couple of patent experts who’ve been following the case is whether Northern California U.S. District Co Judge Lucy Koh will issue a permanent injunction against Samsung, and if so how severe it will be.
Professors Mark Lemley of Stanford Law School and Brian Love of Santa Clara University School of Law see a permanent injunction as likely. “Keep in mind, a preliminary injunction is in place,” Lemley said of Koh’s order blocking U.S. sales of Samsung’s Galaxy 10.1 tablet. “It would be quite surprising if she didn’t enter an injunction at all. The question is how broad an injunction” — in particular, whether it will cover only the Samsung products identified by Apple, or current and future similar products.
Love said he would expect a permanent injunction and “probably more likely than not” an order by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit staying it pending an appeal.
The jury found that Samsung infringed most of the patents Apple sued over, and its trade dress on the iPhone and iPad, and did so willfully. It completely rejected Samsung’s cross claims for infringement.
The jury awarded $1.05 billion. Late Friday afternoon Koh ordered jurors to resume deliberations over some minor inconsistencies in the 20-page verdict form. After revisiting it, they had only reduced the award by $2.4 million, putting the figure at just under $1.05 billion, according to press reports.
“Given the willful infringement, it’s more likely than not the damages award will increase, up to three times” the jury’s award, Love said, noting that will be within Koh’s discretion.
“It’s not an across-the-board victory for Apple,” Love said, “but it’s very close.”
Apple has a second suit pending against Samsung. Koh currently has trial in that case set for March 2014.