Judge Invalidates Two Samsung Patent Claims Ahead of Second Patent Lawsuit with Apple
Last May, Apple filed a motion detailing five patents violated by the Samsung Galaxy S4 and Google's voice activated search assistant Google Now ahead of a second patent infringement lawsuit to take place on March 31, 2014. However, both Apple and Samsung agreed in September 2013 to drop one patent each from the trial, as Judge Lucy Koh ordered both companies to narrow the scope of their ongoing legal battle.
Now, FOSS Patents reports that Judge Koh yesterday invalidated a Samsung patent and ruled that Samsung infringed on an Apple patent, leaving the Korean company with only four patents to bring to the upcoming trial. In detail, Judge Koh nullified a Samsung multimedia synchronization patent and stated that Samsung's Android devices infringed on an Apple patent for a "method, system, and graphical user interface for providing word recommendations", also known as autocomplete.
As Florian Mueller of FOSS Patents suggests, the infringed autocomplete patent could also be problematic for Google and Android device manufacturers:
If Samsung infringes this autocomplete patent (which is what Judge Koh concluded), then other Android device makers also have a problem. Google, which may be (possibly in close cooperation with Samsung) involved with an anonymous reexamination request against the word recommendations patent, will clearly be unhappy about this finding by its own home court.
The ruling by Judge Koh is also likely to affect the mediation meeting between Apple CEO Tim Cook and Samsung Electronics CEO Oh-Hyun Kwon scheduled to take place on or before February 19. In addition to the second infringement lawsuit in March, both companies will also partake in a trial centered around Apple's new call for a U.S. ban on Samsung products set for January 30.