Apple has scored a belated additional victory against Samsung in its endless patent trial battle with the smartphone rival. Apple had originally asked the court for two remedies: financial compensation, and an injunction forbidding Samsung from continuing to sell devices which infringed its patents. The court said yes to the first, no to the second.

As the WSJ reports, a federal appeals court judge has ruled that the court should have also granted the injunction.

“Samsung’s infringement harmed Apple by causing lost market share and lost downstream sales and by forcing Apple to compete against its own patented invention,” the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit said[…]

The appeals court [ruled that] a California trial court that previously denied Apple’s request “abused its discretion when it did not enjoin Samsung’s infringement” … 

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The ruling is unlikely to have much immediate impact on Samsung, as almost all of the affected devices have long been superseded by newer models that don’t infringe Apple’s patents. However, two law college professors say that it could have longer-term implications – allowing Apple to apply for injunctions against newer Samsung devices with similar features, and giving the company additional clout in future disputes.

“That’s where the action is going to be,” said Stanford University law professor Mark Lemley […]

Rutgers University law professor Michael Carrier commented that “Apple now has a weapon it can use in two ways: in future litigation with Samsung and others, and in settlement negotiations.”

The matter may not yet be settled: Samsung is requesting the court to reconsider.

Also not yet finally over is Apple’s appeal against the court ruling that it was guilty of anticompetitive behaviour in its ebooks pricing and practicesFortune reports that the company is now appealing to the U.S. Supreme Court, the final step in the long-running case.

Apple is arguing that the actions it took were necessary given that it wanted to disrupt Amazon’s near-monopoly in the ebook market, and that the issue is sufficiently important to justify a hearing in the Supreme Court. Some appeal court judges had expressed sympathy with this view.

“This case . . . presents issues of surpassing importance to the United States economy,” the company argues in papers filed with the high court Wednesday. “Dynamic, disruptive entry into new or stagnant markets—the lifeblood of American economic growth—often requires the very type of” conduct that Apple engaged in, the company argues, and which U.S. District Judge Denise Cote of Manhattan found to be illegal in July 2013.

When Apple lost its appeal in federal court, the company maintained that while it wanted to put the case behind it, it still believed it had done nothing wrong and might therefore continue to fight for the “principles and values” involved.

Image: Reuters

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