A senior Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) executive said Samsung Electronics' alleged copying of Apple's products subsequently made selling the iPhone and iPad more difficult.
In testimony in the retrial of patent infringement claims between Apple and Samsung, Phil Schiller, Apple's senior vice president of worldwide marketing, said Samsung's devices, particularly its smartphones that looked like the iPhone, made it "much harder" for Apple to set itself apart and market its gadgets.
"It's much harder to create demand, and people question our innovation and design skills like people never used to," Schiller said, according to Reuters, adding that Samsung "weakened the world view of Apple as this great designer and innovator."
"This was an incredibly important time," he said, according to CNET. "As this [infringement] has been occurring, it's harder for us to get new customers and bring them into our ecosystem."
Schiller also said the iPhone was a "bet the company product," and that now the entire company works on it in some way. Apple's iPhone line brings in the lion's share of the company's revenue and profit.
One of the patents at issue is Apple's "pinch-to-zoom" touchscreen command. According to CNET, Michael Wagner, an accountant and lawyer hired by Samsung, said there's no evidence from either company that shows consumers bought Samsung gadgets because they wanted to get that touch-screen feature, negating any lost profits Apple is hoping to claw back from Samsung. "I believe people bought these phones for other features," Wagner said, including AMOLED screens, faster processors and LTE.
Apple's campaign against Samsung, and, by extension, Google's (NASDAQ:GOOG) Android, led to the company's $1 billion courtroom victory against Samsung's Android smartphones in the summer of 2012, though the damages in the ruling were slashed by $450.5 million after U.S. District Court Judge Lucy Koh ruled the jury had erred in calculating the damages. Koh, who is overseeing the retrial, said on Friday that witness testimony will likely conclude on Monday, with closing arguments coming Tuesday.
Last week during opening arguments, Apple asked for $380 million in damages, and Samsung countered and said it is only required to pay $52 million.
The retrial, as AllThingsD notes, is not centering as much on different perspectives on innovation as the original trial did, as is really all about money at this point. However, it comes against the backdrop of a larger continuing fight between Apple and Android device makers.
After years of reverse-engineering electronics gadgets and looking for infringing products, the Rockstar patent consortium owned by Apple, Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT), Ericsson (NASDAQ:ERIC), Sony, EMC and BlackBerry (NASDAQ:BBRY) recently filed a battery of lawsuits against Google and Android manufacturers like Samsung, HTC, Huawei and others. Rockstar paid $4.5 billion for the 6,000 patents that bankrupt Nortel Networks offered up for auction in 2011. Rockstar is primarily backed by Apple, which paid $2.6 billion into the effort.
- see this CNET article
- see this Reuters article
- see this separate CNET article
- see this AllThingsD article
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