Apple and Samsung key court case starts today

by Dale Wright

It seems like we cover Apple and Samsung’s patent battles on a weekly basis on the Snugg blog. But this time, the tech giants are up in court to fight the big one – a case which could have massive implications for the smartphone and tablet industry.
Apple v Samsung

Over the next month, we’ll see Apple’s legal prowess tested to the limit as Samsung battle to keep their Galaxy line on the market. Each company will have the right to present up to 20 witnesses, and that number is likely to include some of the most senior staff at both companies. We’re also likely to hear about the development of key products in both companies’ catalogues.

In a strange twist, Apple rely on Samsung to supply many of the parts for their own phones. They buy screens, RAM and chipsets from Samsung. But that’s not relevant to the court cases. The legal battle is a dispute around the design of Samsung’s own products – both hardware and software – and the alleged infringement of key patents and copyrights which Apple say they’ve spent years (and millions of dollars) developing. Samsung claim that borrowing ideas is part and parcel of the IT industry, and it would be impossible to come up with new ideas without referencing gadgets that already exist.

The results might not be as clear cut as either company would hope. The jury will need to be unanimous in their verdict. Apple have something of an advantage because the case is taking place on home turf in Silicon Valley, but the jurors will be asked to be impartial when assessing the technical evidence.

We’ve covered a few pre-trial bans on the run up to this case, but this really is the crucial moment for both companies. Whatever happens, it could result in billion-dollar consequences for either company.