Designers including Calvin Klein file amicus brief supporting Apple in patent case with Samsung

how to watch apple september 12 event 2017 tim cook
Remember the Apple vs. Samsung case from 2011? It’s still going on, and now more than 100 industrial design professionals and educators have submitted an amicus brief in support of Apple.

For a quick refresher, Apple sued the South Korean giant back in 2011 claiming that Samsung infringed on patented designs and technology utilized in the iPhone. Samsung was ordered to pay $930 million to Apple, but that amount was later reduced by about $382 million by an appeals court. In December 2015, Samsung was ordered to pay $548 million to Apple along with an additional $180 million for “supplemental damages for continued infringement, plus interest.”

In February 2016, an appeals court overturned a separate 2014 ruling that ordered Samsung to pay $119.6 million to Apple for infringing on smartphone patents, awarding a victory to the Korean company. The court even found that Apple infringed on one of Samsung’s patents, and Apple was ordered to pay $158,400. While it was a loss, that amount is chump change for the Cupertino company.

In July 2015, major tech companies including Google, HP, Facebook, Ebay, Dell and more filed an amicus brief supporting Samsung. An amicus brief is a letter from parties that have an interest in the case, and it offers unsolicited information to the court. A year later in July 2016, the U.S. Supreme Court agreed to take the case, and the first oral arguments will be heard on Oct. 10.

The date looms closer, and now we have more than a hundred designers and educators undersigned to another amicus brief — but this time, it’s in support of Apple. The undersigned are impressive as they have provided product design services to companies such as Apple, AT&T, Calvin Klein, Coca-Cola, Ford, General Electric, General Motors, HP, Google, IBM, the New York Stock Exchange, NASA, Samsung itself, and more.

It also features names such as Raymond Riley, executive creative director at Microsoft; Bruce Claxton, the former senior director of design at Motorola Solutions; Calvin Klein, the founder of the fashion brand; Sohrab Vossoughi, a former senior industrial designer at HP; and many others.

The point the Supreme Court will decide is whether or not design patent damages should only be calculated by determining lost profits relating to the component that infringes on a patent, or relating to the entire device. Samsung argues for the former interpretation, and claims $399 million of the $548 million it was ordered to pay — which was initially awarded for infringing the design of the iPhone’s round corners, bezels, and more — is excessive.

The designers and educators believe Apple should be compensated with Samsung’s total profits, because a copied design can mean a lost sale.

“When a manufacturer copies the design of a successful product, it captures the consumer’s understanding of what the product does and what the product means,” according to the brief. “Moreover, copying of a design also allows the copier to enter the marketplace on the back of the brand attributes built by the patent holder — who has expended vast sums and effort in design, development, quality standards, marketing, sales, and product promotion.”

Samsung responded to our request for comment. “We have received overwhelming support for overturning the ruling in favor of Apple, including from leading patent experts, numerous concerned companies, and the U.S. government,” a Samsung spokesperson told Digital Trends. “If left uncorrected, the Appeals court’s ruling could lead to diminished innovation, pave the way for design troll patent litigation and negatively impact the economy and consumers.”


Get ready to say goodbye to some IFTTT support in Gmail by March 31

If This Then That, the popular automation service, will drop some of its support for Gmail by March 31. The decision comes as a response to security concerns and is aimed to protect user data.

Give your MacBook Air some added style with one of these great cases or sleeves

Whether you’re looking for added protection or a stylish flourish, you’re in the right place for the best MacBook Air cases. We have form-hugging cases, luxurious covers, and padded sleeves priced from $10 to $130. Happy shopping!

Here are 15 of our favorite iPad Mini cases, covers to protect your tiny tablet

We take a look at the best iPad Mini cases and covers on the market. We have cases in a range of styles and prices, with all sorts of distinguishing features. If you have an Apple iPad Mini 4 or iPad Mini 5 then get a case now.

Transport your Nintendo Switch in style with these nifty cases

The Nintendo Switch, which boasts both wired and handheld modes, needs a good case to ensure it doesn't get beat up while you're on the go. We scoured through dozens of Switch cases to bring you the best ones.

Safeguard your Sony Xperia 10 smartphone with one of these cases

If you're looking for some protection to keep your Sony smartphone safe, or you want a different style, we've got you covered here with a list of the best Sony Xperia 10 cases. There are clear cases, rugged cases, wallet cases, and more.

Got gadgets galore? Keep them charged up with the 10 best USB-C cables

We're glad to see that USB-C is quickly becoming the norm. That's why we've rounded up some of the better USB-C cables on the market, whether you're looking to charge or sync your smartphone. We've got USB-C to USB-C and USB-C to USB-A.

The Tacs Nato-Lens is a watch for those who live life through a camera lens

Not all watches have to be round, or connect to your phone. The Tacs Nato-Lens is a stylish piece of wristwear with a design inspired by classic SLR cameras, making it a geeky timepiece for the camera and watch fan.

5G's arrival is transforming tech. Here's everything you need to know to keep up

It has been years in the making, but 5G is finally becoming a reality. While 5G coverage is still extremely limited, expect to see it expand in 2019. Not sure what 5G even is? Here's everything you need to know.

This is the easiest way to save your iPhone data to your computer

Living in fear of losing your contacts, photos, messages, and notes on your iPhone? Fear no more -- in this guide, we'll break down exactly how to back up your iPhone to your computer using Apple's iTunes or to the cloud with iCloud.

HMD Global admits Nokia 7 Plus handsets sent user data to China

Nokia could be in some hot water. According to recent reports, Nokia 7 models may be secretly sending data to China without the user knowing about it. Nokia says that the issue was a software bug and that it has been fixed.

Here are the best iPad Pro keyboard cases to pick up with your new tablet

The iPad Pro range can double as laptops, but they do need proper keyboards to fill in effectively. Thankfully, there are loads to choose from and we rounded up the best iPad Pro keyboard cases right here.

24 must-have apps for rooted Android phones and tablets

Rooting your Android device opens up a world of possibilities, along with a few apps. Here are 24 of our favorites, so you can make the most of your rooted device and unleash the true power of Android.

Wring the most out of iOS with the best commands for Siri

You may not know all the things you can say to Siri -- after all, Apple never released an official list of commands for its virtual assistant. Thankfully, we've compiled a list of the best Siri commands to help you out.
Product Review

The new iPad Mini isn’t a beauty, but it performs like a beast

Apple’s new iPad Mini has beastly performance, fluid iOS 12 software, and good battery life. It also looks like it came straight out of 2015, because the design hasn’t been changed. Here's our review of Apple’s 7.9-inch tablet.