It’s 2016, so you know what that means: Apple and Samsung have finally put all their legal battles behind them and are each going to focus just on building the best products they can. LOL, no, just kidding. Already this year we’ve seen Apple score a toothless sales ban against Samsung regarding patents for quick-link, slide-to-unlock, and auto-correct features. While that was a small victory for Apple, the tide has already turned, and today an appeals court has overturned a $120 million verdict connected to this patent dispute.
Samsung managed to convince the court not only that it didn’t infringe upon the quick-link patent, but that those other two patents were invalid and shouldn’t have been issued in the first place.
That lets Samsung off the hook for nearly $120 million – though it’s important to keep in mind that this was just one of many patent battles between the two companies, and Samsung’s already had to pay Apple nearly $550 million in damages stemming from a wholly separate patent case. That story’s not over either, though, and Samsung intends to fight its loss all the way to the Supreme Court.
There’s also a bit of role-reversal going on here, as the appeals court also ruled that Apple was in violation of one of Samsung’s own patents.
Who knows: maybe 2017 will be the year when Samsung and Apple will be done with their patent fight. 2018? We’d take bets, but we’ve been following this story for too long to be optimistic.