In one of two rulings on Monday, Judge Lucy Koh has denied Apple’s request for a permanent injunction against several Samsung’s devices from sale in the U.S.
The devices in question were found to have infringed several of Apple’s patents last summer. However, Judge Koh felt that the features being infringed did not justify an injunction.
“The phones at issue in this case contain a broad range of features, only a small fraction of which are covered by Apple’s patents,” Koh wrote. “Though Apple does have some interest in retaining certain features as exclusive to Apple, it does not follow that entire products must be forever banned from the market because they incorporate, among their myriad features, a few narrow protected functions.”
Mueller, writing for FossPatent believes that it is inevitable that Apple will appeal this ruling.
According to Mueller:
[quote] There is not even the slightest doubt that Apple will appeal the ruling on injunctive relief. When Judge Koh previously ruled on Apple motions for injunctive relief (one against the Galaxy Tab 10.1 and one against the Galaxy Nexus smartphone), she was also rather reluctant to order sales bans: she did order them, but in each case over only one of several intellectual property rights deemed valid and infringed, a fact that few people noticed. But this time around, at the most important juncture of the district court proceedings, Judge Koh has denied Apple’s motion in its entirety.[/quote]
In her ruling, Judge Koh indicated that Apple failed to show that they will suffer irreparable harm and that monetary compensation would not be an appropriate remedy.
According to Judge Koh:
[quote] Here, Samsung may have cut into Apple’s customer base somewhat, but there is no suggestion that Samsung will wipe out Apple’s customer base, or force Apple out of the business of making smartphones. The present case involves lost sales – not a lost ability to be a viable market participant.
If the patents at issue here were similarly essential to the core of Samsung’s products, the Court might see things differently.
In sum, to the limited extent that Apple has been able to show that any of its harms were caused by Samsung’s illegal conduct (in this case, only trade dress dilution), Apple has not established that the equities support an injunction. Accordingly, Apple’s motion for a permanent injunction is DENIED.[/quote]