Apple v. Samsung: Judge Urges Settlement Ahead of Verdict

Posted by · August 15, 2012 11:11 am

As the jury for the Apple-Samsung patent lawsuit prepares to begin deliberations next week, the district court judge presiding over Apple v. Samsung has made one final plea of her own.

“It’s time for peace,” urged U.S. District Court Judge Lucy Koh, speaking in her San Jose courtroom on Wednesday morning. Despite the failure of mediation before the trial began weeks ago, Koh is urging the quarreling companies to make one last attempt at a workable settlement before the jury issues its final decision.

“I’m going to make one more request that CEOs from both sides speak by phone,” the federal judge continued. “I see risks here for both sides.”

Whether Apple CEO Tim Cook and Samsung CEO Choi Gee Sung will agree with Koh’s sentiment that trying to reach a settlement is “at least worth one more try,” however, remains to be seen. Although the attorneys for both companies promised to honor the judge’s request, it is ultimately up to their respective executives to make an honest attempt at peaceful cooperation.

Currently, the Cupertino-based Apple is looking to recover some $2.5 billion in damages for alleged patent infringement by Samsung with its Galaxy mobile devices. The company is also hoping to make permanent the preliminary ban on the sale of Samsung Galaxy tablets and smartphones.

Meanwhile, Samsung—which is hoping the jury will not award either of Apple’s requests—is seeking damages of its own for alleged patent infringement by Apple.

Before imploring the attorneys to settle, the federal judge assured both sides that they had successfully demonstrated their concern about intellectual property rights. “If all you wanted is to raise that you have IP on these devices, message delivered,” Koh said.

Then again, given the length, scope, and overall absurdity of the Apple-Samsung case (and most tech patent cases for that matter), it’s probably safe to say that both companies want something more than increased awareness.

[Sources: Reuters and Bloomberg Businessweek]

For more on the Apple v. Samsung patent lawsuit…