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Fortune: When it comes to the Apple-Samsung patent war, WSJ misses the point

Published May 8th, 2013 9:55AM EDT
Apple Samsung Patent War

According to Fortune’s Apple 2.0 blog, The Wall Street Journal’s recent report suggesting that the smartphone patent wars have been a big bust for all involved misses the point. Fortune’s Philip Elmer-DeWitt writes that while much of the Journal’s argument makes sense, the paper fails to differentiate between standards-essential patents (SEPs) and non-essential patents, and therefore fails to distinguish between claims made by Apple from claims made by the likes of Samsung.

“Jones is correct that a string of rulings in SEP cases have left litigants with little to show for their efforts,” Elmer-DeWitt writes. “Indeed, such lawsuits often backfire. Just last week a preliminary European Union ruling found Google’s Motorola division guilty of abusing of its standards-essential patents when it sued Microsoft over the use of a popular video compression standard. But the $1.05 billion Samsung-Apple verdict is the exception that proves the rule.”

He notes that Apple sued Samsung for unlawfully utilizing several of its innovations in various Android devices while Samsung retaliated by suing Apple using SEPs alone. The jury threw out all of Samsung’s claims as a result, but found Samsung guilty of infringement on nearly all counts.

Zach Epstein
Zach Epstein Executive Editor

Zach Epstein has been the Executive Editor at BGR for more than 10 years. He manages BGR’s editorial team and ensures that best practices are adhered to. He also oversees the Ecommerce team and directs the daily flow of all content.

Zach first joined BGR in 2007 as a Staff Writer covering business, technology, and entertainment. His work has been quoted by countless top news organizations, and he was recently named one of the world's top 10 “power mobile influencers” by Forbes. Prior to BGR, Zach worked as an executive in marketing and business development with two private telcos.