Apple's Chief Patent Litigator Profiled as Samsung Threatens Lawsuits over iPhone 5

finalyerbaBloomberg Businessweek publishes a profile of Noreen Krall, Apple's chief patent litigator handling the growing number of lawsuits and other disputes involving Apple, including the high-profile U.S. case that saw Apple win a $1 billion verdict against Samsung late last month. The article offers an interesting look at how Krall has managed to become one of the "masters of the chessboard" in understanding patent and court rules around the world and herding teams of lawyers both inside and outside of the company.

“There is no historical precedent for what Noreen Krall is doing,” said John Thorne, who ran Verizon Communications Inc.’s intellectual-property team before joining Kellogg Huber in Washington this year. “Good generalship produces results like Noreen has gotten. She’s mastering big decisions, like which law firms to hire, how to manage resources, how much of Tim Cook’s time to take.”

The report notes that the 2009 hiring of Bruce Sewell from Intel to become Apple's general counsel and the subsequent 2010 recruitment of Krall from Sun was part of a strategy to ramp up the company's patent protection efforts as the looming threat from Android grew. Krall, an electrical engineer by training who spent time at both IBM and Sun before joining Apple, appears to be highly-regarded by her peers and former coworkers, and while Apple refused to comment for the report it appears that Krall is certainly making a name for herself at her latest company.

Krall's profile comes as Apple may be facing even more lawsuits in the coming months, as The Korea Times reports that anonymous Samsung officials have acknowledged plans to sue Apple over the iPhone 5, focusing on LTE-related patents held by the Korean company.

"It's true that Samsung Electronics has decided to take immediate legal action against the Cupertino-based Apple. Countries in Europe and even the United States ― Apple's home-turf ― are our primary targets," said a senior Samsung who is directly involved with the matter, in a telephone interview with The Korea Times. [...]

"Apple claimed the existing 3G-related patents are standard essential patents (SEPs) according to our earlier commitment to the FRAND (fair, reasonable, and non-discriminatory) terms. But the story is totally different when you talk about LTE patents. These are new and highly-valued," said another Samsung executive.

The report also mentions word from an anonymous executive at Korean carrier SK Telecom claiming that Apple has agreed to launch an LTE-enabled iPhone 5 on the carrier. Word of negotiations between Apple and SK Telecom surfaced last month, and late last week The Wall Street Journal confirmed that the iPhone 5 will have "global LTE support".

Update 9:20 PM: SK Telecom has contacted us to let us know that it has not confirmed anything to The Korea Times with respect to the iPhone. The Korea Times has also updated its report to cite "industry sources" rather than SK Telecom directly.

Top Rated Comments

drewisanapple Avatar
130 months ago
Someone is having a little fit.

How is 3G different than 4G. Samesung needs to realized that when you are caught red-handed than you get in trouble.
Score: 34 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Raftysworld Avatar
130 months ago
Apple already had LTE in the New iPad before Samsung even touched it, so this couldn't be more pathetic. Shame on Samsung.
Score: 33 Votes (Like | Disagree)
samcraig Avatar
130 months ago
I guess we could all discuss what warrants essential technology patents vs what doesn't.

Fact is - if Samsung does have these patents and believes Apple has infringed - then no matter how frivolous - they are entitled to have their day in court if it goes to trial just like Apple was.

If you're going to hate the system - hate the entire system - not just when a company you don't care for takes advantage of it.
Score: 24 Votes (Like | Disagree)
chrmjenkins Avatar
130 months ago
Apple is going to walk into court claiming two things: 1) Even if LTE is new, it's still a standard that all handset manufacturers have to implement (and therefore should be FRAND) and 2) they're buying chips from a third party that are implementing the standards, so technically that should be bundled in the sale of the chip.
Score: 20 Votes (Like | Disagree)
mmccaskill Avatar
130 months ago
The bigger question is do other LTE phone manufacturers have existing licenses with Samsung? If not I think it's clear why Samsung is doing this.
Score: 14 Votes (Like | Disagree)
iEvolution Avatar
130 months ago
What'd you guys expect for Samsung to just take it?

What comes around goes around as far as I am concerned.
Score: 12 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Popular Stories

iPhone 14 Dummies 1 Feature

Everything Rumored for Apple's September Event: iPhone 14, Apple Watch Pro and More

Friday August 12, 2022 2:34 pm PDT by
There's just about a month to go until Apple holds its annual September event focusing on new iPhone and Apple Watch models. We thought we'd take a quick look at everything that's rumored for Apple's September event to give MacRumors readers a rundown on what to expect when the first fall event rolls around. iPhone 14 The iPhone 14 can probably be described more as an "iPhone 13S" because...
z fold 4 1

Hands-On With Samsung's Latest Foldable Smartphones, the Galaxy Z Fold and Z Flip

Friday August 12, 2022 12:46 pm PDT by
Samsung this week launched its fourth-generation foldable devices, the $1,000 Galaxy Z Flip and the $1,800 Galaxy Z Fold. Though there's no sign of a comparable Apple foldable device on the horizon, rumors suggest prototypes are in the works, so we thought we'd take a look at Samsung's newest smartphones to see what Apple needs to measure up to when a foldable iPhone does come out. Subscribe ...
iPhone 14 Pro Purple Rear Flat MacRumors Exclusive

iPhone 14 Pro: Analyst Believes Storage Will Continue to Start at 128GB Despite Rumored Price Increase

Friday August 12, 2022 7:04 am PDT by
It wouldn't be the month before an iPhone launch without a few back-and-forth rumors, with the latest debate concerning iPhone 14 Pro storage. iPhone 14 Pro render by Ian Zelbo While research firm TrendForce forecasted that iPhone 14 Pro models could start with an increased 256GB of storage, Haitong International analyst Jeff Pu today forecasted that the upcoming Pro models will continue to...
iPhone 14 Pro Purple Front and Back MacRumors Exclusive feature

iPhone 14 Is Just a Few Weeks Away: Three Tips to Prepare for the New iPhone

Wednesday August 10, 2022 4:08 am PDT by
The launch of the new iPhone 14 is just a few weeks away, meaning millions of iPhone customers will soon upgrade their existing iPhone or perhaps get an iPhone for the first time. Exclusive MacRumors iPhone 14 Pro renders by graphic designer Ian Zelbo Whether upgrading from an older model or this is your first iPhone, we've rounded up a few tips to help you prepare for the next flagship...
iPhone 14 Pro Lineup Feature Silver

Kuo: Apple to Increase Prices of iPhone 14 Pro Models

Wednesday August 10, 2022 8:22 am PDT by
Apple plans to increase the prices of iPhone 14 Pro models compared to iPhone 13 Pro models, according to analyst Ming-Chi Kuo. Kuo did not reveal exact pricing for the iPhone 14 Pro models. However, in a tweet today, he estimated that the average selling price of the iPhone 14 lineup as a whole will increase by about 15% compared to the iPhone 13 lineup. In the United States, the iPhone...
top stories 13aug2022

Top Stories: New Battery Percentage Icon in iOS 16, USB-C AirPods Rumor, and More

Saturday August 13, 2022 6:00 am PDT by
This week brought some shocking news for iOS 16 beta testers, with Apple bringing back the iPhone battery percentage to the status bar after a number of years. Other news and rumors this week included word that Apple has started recording portions of its media event planned for next month to introduce the iPhone 14 and Apple Watch Series 8, claims about iPhone 14 Pro pricing and Apple's...