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Australian patent commissioner sued by Samsung over review of Apple patents

Posted: , by Alan F.

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Australian patent commissioner sued by Samsung over review of Apple patents
Samsung is suing the Australian patent commissioner over four patents that the Korean manufacturer says were "inappropriately" granted to Apple in 2009-2010. On May 22nd, Samsung filed a Statement of claim in the country's Federal Court, seeking a judicial review over the four patents. Samsung hopes that the patents get nullified which would allow it to seek a dismissal in a suit filed by Apple that claims Samsung infringed upon those patents in producing its Samsung GALAXY Tab 10.1 tablet.

A hearing on the matter is set for June 25th before Justice Annabelle Bennett, who is quickly becoming Australia's answer to Judge Lucy Koh in the States. Both have presided over the majority of Samsung-Apple legal clashes in their respective countries. Samsung claims that the four patents should not have been issued because they were duplicates of innovation patents already granted by Australia's patent commissioner. While Samsung will of course have a highly paid legal team arguing its case, the Australian patent commission will be represented by the Australian Government solicitor.

The Samsung GALAXY Tab 10.1

The Samsung GALAXY Tab 10.1

The four patents involved are number 2006330724 - Unlocking a device by performing gestures on an unlock image (Granted April 1, 2010), 2007283771 - Portable electronic device for photo management (Granted May 20, 2010), 2008201540 - List scrolling and document translation, scaling, and rotation on a touch-screen display (Granted February 11, 2010) and 2009200366 - List scrolling and document translation, scaling, and rotation on a touch screen display (Granted July 23, 2009). While Apple claimed at times during the initial hearings that Samsung infringed on between 3 and 10 patents with the production of the Samsung GALAXY Tab 10.1 tablet, the Cupertino based company plans on alleging that Samsung infringed on 22 patents in making the device, when the final hearings take place between July and October. 12 of the 22 patents have been brought up by Apple in legal action taking place in other countries.

Patent lawyer Mark Summerfield expects the suit against the Australian patent commissioner to be settled quickly ahead of the final hearings between Apple and Samsung. Summerfield says that in his opinion, the patents should never have been granted. Late last year Samsung used Apple's suits as a way to publicize its flagship tablet at the time.
"Technically, the patents should not have been granted, so there is a legitimate case for review. On the other hand, the consequences for Apple are fairly harsh ... I think the court will consider itself to have considerable discretion in determining what the legislative intent was in a case like this."-Mark Summerfield, patent attorney
source: ITNews via BGR

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posted on 08 Jun 2012, 22:08 12

1. ph00ny (Posts: 1512; Member since: 26 May 2011)

Justice Annabelle Bennett? Isn't this the judge that's been granting apple all kinds of injunctions? iirc, her husband is a partner at the firm representing apple as well as herself being an alumni of the 5wentworth (law firm for apple)

She's listed in their website

Here is her husband listed as a senior member of the firm

posted on 09 Jun 2012, 00:22 8

4. Droid_X_Doug (Posts: 5993; Member since: 22 Dec 2010)

I wonder what Australian law says about conflicts of interest? Certainly looks like one. What is the saying - where there is smoke there is fire?

If nothing else, it makes for nice bonuses for the attorneys representing Sammy.

posted on 09 Jun 2012, 02:42 1

8. taco50 (banned) (Posts: 5506; Member since: 08 Oct 2009)

The conspiracy theories by android enthusiasts continue

posted on 09 Jun 2012, 05:31 10

13. andro. (Posts: 1999; Member since: 16 Sep 2011)

And the delusional blind defense of apple by ifanatics despite substantial evidence and statistical findings of wrong doings or device faults continues!

posted on 09 Jun 2012, 12:02 1

18. taco50 (banned) (Posts: 5506; Member since: 08 Oct 2009)

Let's see some links to these "faults" you claim

You always claim returns for issues when in fact Apple has the lowest return rates and failure rates.

posted on 09 Jun 2012, 11:58 2

16. networkdood (Posts: 6330; Member since: 31 Mar 2010)

conspiracy? Well, if you want to call facts a conspiracy, then, sure lady....

posted on 08 Jun 2012, 22:18 5

2. x7black7x (Posts: 118; Member since: 19 Feb 2012)

WoW just WoW
wtf??? is this the thing we call law???

posted on 09 Jun 2012, 00:49 4

5. phonemonkey (Posts: 168; Member since: 13 Feb 2012)


posted on 08 Jun 2012, 23:35 9

3. -box- (Posts: 3991; Member since: 04 Jan 2012)

Goooooooooo Samsung! Start a revocation of all BS patents and a more restrictive approval process for common use.

posted on 09 Jun 2012, 01:05 2

6. QinEmpire (Posts: 145; Member since: 16 May 2012)

Who says Apple does patent trolling? Now Samsung is doing one step further right at the commissioners ' doorstep haha..

posted on 09 Jun 2012, 02:56 7

9. MorePhonesThanNeeded (Posts: 645; Member since: 23 Oct 2011)

An idiot who doesn't even understand what he just read, this is what the Apple Defense Force is represented by...you should be disowned for even commenting when you have little comprehension of the subject matter. Good day sir!

Some one tell this guy what a patent troll is and how this doesn't make Samsung a patent troll when they suing the Australian Patent Commissioner for granting patents when they should not have. They need to check this stuff here in the US to ensure companies aren't getting preferential patent treatment. Hmm that justice I seriously hope she upholds the law and not brush this aside, this does really sound like a bad tactic and it involves some shady dealings including the patent office. Perhaps arrests should be in order for disservice to consumer interest, yes?!?

posted on 09 Jun 2012, 04:23 6

11. remixfa (Posts: 14605; Member since: 19 Dec 2008)

its not that big of a conspiracy theory. Most of the time its just the patent clerk has no idea what the hell he is agreeing to a patent for. They check it for certain things, probably run the most mild of patent checks to make sure its not already patented, and then grant it.

I wouldnt be surprised if apple threw out 20 different versions of the same patent to the patent offices hoping one of them gets through. the patents that they have existed on phones long before them.

posted on 09 Jun 2012, 12:02 2

17. networkdood (Posts: 6330; Member since: 31 Mar 2010)

Qin is strikercho - someone who is ant-google - he lives in China - much less freedoms than people realize and Google represents choice and freedom - so naturally, striker would be anti-Google

posted on 09 Jun 2012, 01:11 9

7. groupsacc (Posts: 232; Member since: 28 Feb 2012)

LOL @ patents 2008201540 and 2009200366; the only difference between these two patents are a hyphen (touch screen and touch-screen), wtf. Maybe I can go and patent another one with the word touchscreen and start suing everyone.

posted on 09 Jun 2012, 08:00 3

15. MartyK (Posts: 947; Member since: 11 Apr 2012)

hahaha.... I am getting a Patent for touchscreen(s), thus if you put an s behind your touchscreen I'm suing!!..hahahahahaha

posted on 09 Jun 2012, 03:42 3

10. nagabiru003 (Posts: 11; Member since: 04 Jun 2012)

weren't there another devices having those capabilities before these patents exist? oh, wait, Apple "invented" it....

posted on 09 Jun 2012, 04:48 4

12. Bluesky02 (Posts: 1439; Member since: 05 Dec 2011)

Sue them to hell, those Apple baby food patent office

posted on 09 Jun 2012, 05:52 2

14. som (Posts: 768; Member since: 10 Nov 2009)

ITC should stop and ban the crazy rotten Apple Patent Wars. No more Patent Wars on earth before Apple $100+ billions can buy the whole Patents Commissioner Office and shut the doors on other companies Patent Applications.

posted on 09 Jun 2012, 12:05 4

19. networkdood (Posts: 6330; Member since: 31 Mar 2010)

I wonder what else APPLE is doing - how many judges do they bribe as well as ITC members - how much money do they give to a specific politician and what that politician's political views are? Someone should investigate APPLE and find out what they are doing behind closed doors, because on the outside they seem to be a corrupt and dishonest company....or maybe it is all a dream.

posted on 09 Jun 2012, 12:30 1

20. Droid_X_Doug (Posts: 5993; Member since: 22 Dec 2010)

If Apple has bought the investigators, who would be able to do the investigating? $90 Billion buys a lot of 'friends'....

posted on 09 Jun 2012, 17:09

24. networkdood (Posts: 6330; Member since: 31 Mar 2010)

different investigators....lol

posted on 09 Jun 2012, 22:01

26. Droid_X_Doug (Posts: 5993; Member since: 22 Dec 2010)

Unless all of the investigators have been 'bought'. $90 Billion buys a lot.... :-)

posted on 09 Jun 2012, 14:16

21. ph00ny (Posts: 1512; Member since: 26 May 2011)

I'm definitely waiting for round 2

Supposedly samsung owns a large chunk of the LTE patents and iphone5 is coming out with LTE this year

posted on 09 Jun 2012, 15:00

22. Droid_X_Doug (Posts: 5993; Member since: 22 Dec 2010)

I suspect that whomever is the LTE chip supplier to Apple will have a license from Sammy for LTE patents owned by Sammy. The real fight will happen when Google gets its application for the notification function approved to issue. In fact, I wonder how much of Apple's current patent fights are a matter of positioning for a final negotiation once the patent landscape is fully developed.

posted on 09 Jun 2012, 15:27 2

23. johnbftl (Posts: 281; Member since: 09 Jun 2012)

I've wondered for a while now if there is any precedent for a class action lawsuit against Apple for attempting to monopolize the industry. Apple currently has lawsuits and is attempting to ban handsets from every smartphone manufacturer except RIM and Nokia. In the 90s the U.S. Government sued Microsoft for something similar. It's become ridiculous and it's not going to stop. There are so many ifans, including judges, that believe Apple can do no wrong and are "innovators" that Apple is going to keep winning or at least slowing down the import of competitors products. Apple needs to be stopped before this country turns into Demolition Man where Taco Bell, or in this case Apple, owns everything.

posted on 09 Jun 2012, 22:00

25. Droid_X_Doug (Posts: 5993; Member since: 22 Dec 2010)

Doubtful that a monopoly charge against Apple would stick fr their actions in the smartphone market. Depending on the source, they have around 30-ish percent of the smartphone market. MS had around 85% of the desktop PC market when the DOJ started their monopoly proceeding against MS. Apple has a greater dominance in the tablet space, but the Apple market share in the tablet space is expected to drop, so again, it gets kind of hard to charge Apple with being a monopolist.

I really think that Apple is pursuing an aggressive patent enforcement strategy for two reasons - 1. short-term keep competitors at bay, and 2. longer-term develop the best position possible when it comes time to negotiate licensing once the patent wars sort themselves out.

Apple has not won every patent battle it has engaged in. At some point, it will lose more battles than it wins. Or, a patent will issue that poses an existential threat to iOS (think Google's application for the notification function). Then it will be time to cut a deal. It is easier to cut a favorable deal if you start the negotiation from a perceived position of strength.

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