“In a historic ruling on August 24th, a U.S. District Court jury awarded Apple over $1.05 billion in damages after finding Samsung guilty of infringing on six of Apple’s ‘design’ patents,” Trefis Team writes for Forbes. “We say ‘historic’ not because of the high dollar amount, which in itself is not particularly significant to either company considering their huge sizes individually, but because of the ramifications that the ruling has on future innovations in the mobile industry. Apart from the possible impact that the judgement has on the mobile industry’s future R&D spending decisions, it also increases Apple’s clout in a market it commands at least 70% of profits of each quarter.”
“Apple could use this as a precedent to press further charges against Samsung as well as other Google’s Android partners such as Motorola and HTC. Apple has already filed an injunction to temporarily ban the sale of some of the patent-infringing Samsung devices in the U.S,” Trefis writes. “If Apple succeeds in doing so, Samsung may see only a limited near-term impact considering that these devices are fairly old now and are nearing their end-of-product-cycle. But it could set a dangerous precedent for a similar case that is scheduled for next year that concerns some of Samsung’s newer models such as the highly successful Galaxy S III.”
Trefis writes, “From a broader industry perspective, with smartphones proliferating and mobile devices seeing a huge growth in demand, we could be seeing the start of a fundamental change in how competitors try to outdo each other in these hotly contested markets… Apple, being at the forefront of the mobile device revolution, stands to benefit immensely from such a shift as the ruling has given its near-exclusive control over some of the features that are now considered essential for a smartphone experience. Other competitors will now have to design effective workarounds to avoid patent litigations and may be relegated to playing catch-up with Apple in the near-term… Eventually, this should lead to more design innovations, leading the industry forward in terms of both hardware as well as design improvements.”
Read more in the full article here.