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Apple’s $930m win over Samsung slashed by courts

A US appeals court has ruled that Samsung no longer has to pay Apple the full $930 million (£593m) it owed after losing a previous legal battle.

The write-down was declared as the court decided Samsung did not infringe on Apple’s trade dress intellectual property, as reported by AppleInsider.

Trade dress patents relate to wide-ranging design and aesthetic choices that determine how products are presented.

The original verdict, which came in 2012, determined that Samsung infringed design and utility patents, as well as trade dress intellectual property.

However, the court has now decided that Samsung’s phones couldn’t be guilty of infringing trade dress, as the design choices had functional, as well as aesthetic, benefit.

One example given was the distinctive rounded, rectangular shape of the iPhone, which was a unique design choice by Apple.

The fact that the shape made the phones easier to use, however, meant that Samsung wasn’t actually imitating trade dress.

A similar point was made regarding app icons, which were ruled as having made the iPhone ‘more intuitive’, and thus falling outside the category of trade dress.

Related: iPhone 6 vs Samsung Galaxy S6

The new decision means Samsung will now pay less than $930 million to Apple, which is expected to amount to a $382 million (£244m) discount.

We therefore vacate the jury’s damages awards against the Samsung products that were found liable for trade dress dilution and remand for further proceedings consistent with this opinion,” reads the ruling.

The court also decided to uphold the decision that Samsung would not be granted the retrial it requested.

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