At least one portion of Apple’s longstanding legal battle with Samsung has finally drawn to a close. Earlier today, the U.S. Supreme Court refused to hear Samsung’s appeal of a jury ruling which originally awarded Apple $120 million after finding that Samsung had infringed upon a number of iPhone innovations, including the slide-to-unlock feature Apple touted on the original iPhone and smart data detection. The data detection feature specifically involves scenarios where iOS is able to detect when an item like a phone number is present in, say, an email. In turn, the number will become a clickable link that will allow the user, in this particular example, to quickly tap it and call the phone app into action.
Samsung, predictably, isn’t happy with the Court’s decision and made a point of noting that Apple’s slide-to-unlock patent has been invalidated by various courts around the globe. Samsung’s statement (via CNET) in the wake of the Supreme Court decision reads in part:
Our argument was supported by many who believed that the Court should hear the case to reinstate fair standards that promote innovation and prevent abuse of the patent system. One of Apple’s patents at issue in this case has been invalidated by courts around the world, and yet today’s decision allows Apple to unjustly profit from this patent, stunts innovation and places competition in the courtroom rather than the marketplace.
Incidentally, both Apple and Samsung still have bigger legal fish to fry. Recall that Apple and Samsung will head back to court in May to determine how much of an initial $1 billion jury award Samsung has to pay Apple. The figure has since been reduced to $398 million and the upcoming trial will seek to decide upon a final damages amount.