Samsung could be fined a further $15billion in Apple patent debacle

News Tony Crammond 16:59, 28 Dec 2012

Samsung could be set to receive another momentous fine in its ongoing patent fracas with Apple

If you’re managing to keep up with the Apple/Samsung lawsuit debacle, and you could be forgiven for not seeing as it’s had more ups and downs than Space Mountain, there’s been an interesting twist in the saga which could see Samsung hit with another fine.

For a while, it’s seemed as though Apple were the bad guys, using their seemingly limitless legal budget to quash the competition, but it turns out that Samsung isn’t afraid to roll its sleeves up and sling some proverbial mud either, except this time it may have backfired.

To cut a long and complicated story short, some of Samsung’s own technologies use what are termed ‘standard-essential’ patents, which means, very basically, that the company is legally obliged to license the tech to anyone who asks and can pay a fee.

If a fee agreement can’t be reached (which was always likely to be the case when the disagreement is between the two most contentious companies on the planet) then it has to be decided by a court.

But, and this is the good part, instead of following this process, it appears that the Korean manufacturer may have rejected Apple’s request for licensing out of hand and tried to force the courts to have its devices retracted instead, rather than allowing a court to settle a fee fairly.

Still with us? Good.

So, despite the fact that Samsung withdrew its request for Apple’s devices to be banned, under European Law this little snafu could see the company fined up to 10% of the previous years’ profits, which amounts to somewhere in the region of $15 billion!

Here's hoping these two great tech companies settle their differences soon!


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