Apple vs. Samsung Patent Lawsuit Closing Arguments Spark Fireworks

Verbal fireworks as landmark patent case wraps up.

April 29, 2014, 10:26 AM
PHOTO: An employee shows an Apple's iPhone 4s (L) and a Samsung's Galaxy S3 (R) at a mobile phone shop in Seoul on August 27, 2012.
An employee shows an Apple's iPhone 4s (L) and a Samsung's Galaxy S3 (R) at a mobile phone shop in Seoul on August 27, 2012.
Jung Yeon-Je/AFP/Getty Images

April 29, 2014 -- The landmark court battle between Apple and Samsung over smartphone patents wrapped up today with verbal fireworks between dueling attorneys as they made closing arguments.

At stake is the ownership of key elements of smartphone technology, and possibly dominance of the $330 billion-a-year market for smartphones worldwide.

Apple attorney Harold McElhinny, invoking the late Steve Jobs, told jurors that Apple's products, including its iPhone and iPad, had been "created by true geniuses," according to the Associated Press. He accused Samsung of "unfairly and brazenly ripping off" those geniuses' work.

Samsung's attorney, Williams Price, said in his closing argument that the South Korean company had not infringed upon Apple's patents, according to the AP, but had instead used Google-developed Android software. Apple's suit, Price told jurors, was based on fear of Samsung's success.

"This is a made-up case," Price said, according to the San Jose Mercury News' Howard Mintz.

The suit’s roots date back to 2007, when Apple unveiled its then-revolutionary iPhone, and Samsung scrambled to offer competing features with its Galaxy, which made use of Google’s Android operating system.

Silicon Valley phone technology battle nears close

During the past three years of smartphone patent litigation between the companies, Samsung’s share of the market has grown, and Samsung is now the market leader.

Two years ago, a federal jury agreed Samsung had infringed on Apple patents, and Samsung was ordered to pay $900 million in damages. The company appealed that decision.

In the U.S. District Court for Northern California in San Jose on Monday, a jury of four men and four women was given 53 pages of instructions on how to decide whether patent infringement occurred, and, if infringement did occur, how to calculate damages. When the jury is sent behind closed doors later this week to deliberate, the most contentious issues before them will include:

Who infringed on who’s patents?

Samsung claims Apple violated two Samsung patents, one of which Samsung alleges makes the iPhone’s FaceTime feature possible. Apple says it has not infringed on those or any other Samsung patents. Apple claims nine of Samsung’s smartphones and one of Samsung’s tablets infringe on five Apple patents.

Who owes what to whom?

Apple wants $2.2 billion in damages. Samsung wants $6 million.

Samsung reports higher Q1 earnings on smartphones

Value of the Apple’s patents on which it claims infringement.

Samsung’s expert witnesses have argued Apple’s patents are worth around $38 million -- a small fraction of the $2.2 billion Apple wants in damages.

Whom should Apple have sued?

Samsung contends that the patents Apple claims were infringed on were developed not by Samsung but primarily by Google, as part of Google’s Android operating system. Google is not a party to the lawsuit. Google did not respond to a request for comment today by ABC News.

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