Three months after the United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit vacated $380 million in damages, thus necessitating a third trial in the first California case between these parties, but upheld approximately $547 million in mostly design patent-related damages, “it looks like one of the patents underlying that damages claim should never have been granted in the first place,” according ot FOSS Patents (http://tinyurl.com/nn9zwnh).
The Central Reexamination Division of the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) has reexamined one of the key iPhone design patents in the Apple vs. Samsung lawsuit. The validity of one of the patents (618,677) has received a “non-final” rejection.
According to FOSS Patents: “The problem the D’677 patent faces here is that the USPTO has determined (for now) that this patent “is not entitled to benefit of the filing date” of two previous Apple design patent applications because the design at issue was not disclosed in those earlier applications. As a result, certain prior art is eligible now, and against the background of that additional prior art, the USPTO believes the patent shouldn’t have been granted.”
This is all part of an ongoing, global legal battle. Apple and Samsung had filed more than 30 lawsuits against each other across four continents. For example, Apple alleges that Samsung copied the slide-to-unlock technology of its iPhone and iPad devices. On May 14, 2014, an U.S. appeals court affirmed a decision by the U.S. International Trade Commission (ITC) that Apple is innocent of violating three patents owned by Samsung. Earlier that month, a jury handed back a verdict in the latest Apple-Samsung legal battle over patent infringement.