Two of the biggest names in tech have been fighting for the position of the world’s biggest company in their industry. Apple and Samsung’s rivalry has been intense for the past decade for so many reasons. The battle between the iPhone and Galaxy for smartphone supremacy is the biggest, playing its part in a lengthy series of lawsuits.
Cases disputed centered around Samsung allegedly copying the design of the iPhone for one of its’ Galaxy smartphones. Back in 2012, a patenting row over which firm owned the copyright to use rounded corners for smartphones, among other things, resulted in Samsung being ordered to pay Apple $1bn in damages.
Late last year, the US Supreme Court ruled in Samsung’s favor, vastly reducing the amount it had to pay to Apple, but are relations thawing between the two giants? A second retrial has been ordered relating to the $399 million in damages that Samsung were ordered to pay. This is set to take place in early 2018, but it could mark the end of this particular dispute.
An end to this lawsuit will give both businesses some breathing space. It will also give them an opportunity to focus on their own products, rather than keeping an eye on the competition and sinking millions of dollars into costly disputes. There is a strong possibility that this latest visit to the law courts may be the last concerning patents.
The outcome that Samsung will be hoping for in this case of dispute resolution is a further reduction in their damages bill. As for Apple, they will look to ensure they don’t lose any more money and that the trial goes as quickly as possible. However, a better deal for them i.e. no further reduction in damages, would be most welcome.
From both parties’ perspective, a quick and final decision will herald the end of a saga that started back in 2011. More than seven years later, the fact that an end is sight will help them to focus on what is important – trying to be at the top of the tree in the tech industry.
The timing of the next lawsuit is not that convenient, as the busy Christmas period is coming up. Both the iPhone X and Galaxy S8 will be high up on shoppers’ wish lists. The need to focus on their latest products far outweighs focusing on a lawsuit where damages amounting to a small proportion of each firm’s profits.
Apple’s newest smartphone is due for release this week. As Christmas is less than two months away, they would not have wanted to see their dispute with Samsung resurface. Samsung’s Galaxy Note 8 went on sale last month, but will be a product the Korean tech titans will want to push as an alternative festive gift.
The Apple/Samsung dispute looks likely to end at some point next year. Its outcome is likely to be muted though as a result of fatigue over the whole case, but once it is over, all involved will no doubt be relieved.