patent

Photo: technobuffalo.com

The foreman of the jury that awarded Apple just 5.5 percent of the $2.2B it claimed Samsung owed for patent infringements said yesterday that Apple should sue Google rather than handset manufacturers, reports the WSJ.

If you really feel that Google is the cause behind this, as I think everybody has observed, then don’t beat around the bush,” said Tom Dunham, whose job at IBM was to oversee developers expected to file patents. “Let the courts decide. But a more direct approach may be something to think about” …

It had previously been suggested that Apple might be using Samsung as a proxy target, when the real aim was to hurt Android. Of the five patents in question, only one – slide to unlock – was Samsung-specific, the rest being part of Android.

This was one element of Samsung’s defence: that if anyone had infringed Apple’s patents, it was Google rather than Samsung – an argument that was strengthened by Google offering to underwrite some or all of Samsung’s costs if it lost the case. From Dunham’s comments, it would appear the jury – or its foreman, at least – tended to agree.

Apple likely chose to sue Samsung as the company makes more money from Android than anyone else. After being awarded such a trivial sum in the scheme of things, however, there would seem to be little to gain from Apple going after Google directly, especially as it won on only two of the Android-related features.