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Apple vs. Samsung patent case should go back to lower court: US Department of Justice

The US Department of Justice has suggested the Supreme Court that the Apple vs. Samsung smartphone patent litigation case should go back to a lower court. The Supreme Court was asked to overturn an appeals court ruling that had favored Apple over Samsung and asked that it return the case to the trial court for more litigation.

Samsung and Apple have been feuding over smartphone patents since 2011. Apple had sued Samsung alleging that the South Korean smartphone company infringed upon iPhone’s patents, designs, and trademark appearances. Samsung was then ordered to pay $930 million in damages to Apple in 2012, but the amount was reduced to $548 million when the US Court of Appeals reversed the trademark liability.

The appeals court, however, upheld Samsung’s infringement of Apple’s design and UI related patents. Samsung then asked the Supreme Court to review the design patent portion of the decision saying that the damages awarded to Apple were excessive. The justices then agreed to review whether the damages should consider the total profits from a product if the patent applies to only one component.

The Justice Department said yesterday in its amicus brief that it was unclear whether Samsung had produced enough evidence to support its argument that the phone components should matter when calculating damages, not the entire product. The Supreme Court should now send the case back to the trial court to determine whether a new trial is warranted.

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