Korean giant’s shares jump as latest court decision indicates tide is turning in its favour
Apple’s global patent dispute with arch rival Samsung took another twist early today [31st August 2012] when a Japanese judge ruled that smartphones and tablets made by the Korean manufacturer didn’t violate the US company’s designs.
The lawsuit related to Apple’s patents for synchronizing music and video data with servers but, in delivering his verdict, Tokyo District Judge Tamotsu Shoji not only threw out the claim but also awarded costs against the US giant.
His decision compared starkly with that of a Californian jury only last Friday when Apple scored a sweeping victory over Samsung, winning $1.05 billion in damages and paving the way for a US sales ban on at least eight handsets in the run-up to Christmas.
With the smartphone market calculated to be worth $219 billion last year and still rising, both sides have much at stake.
Also last Friday [24th August 2012], both were barred from selling certain devices in South Korea when a Seoul Central District Court ruled they infringed each other’s patents.
In early trading in Seoul today Samsung’s shares rose around 2 per cent, adding to rises gained the previous day when it was revealed that Apple’s hoped-for ban on US sales of its Korean rival’s phones would not take place as early as thought.
Some analysts are already suggesting the tide is turning in favour of Samsung which already outsells more smartphones than any other manufacturer, boasting about 35 per cent of the world market by unit sales compared to Apple’s 18 per cent.
One analyst, Kim Hyung Sik of Taurus Investment Securities was reported as saying: “Samsung had this win in a country (Japan) that’s strong at intellectual property. The mood is turning positive for Samsung.”