Apple And Samsung Face Off In Court Again Over Patents

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Each company claims the other one has swiped its patents. This time Apple is going after patents in the Android operating system that run Samsung's Galaxy S3.


Before he died, Apple co-founder Steve Jobs said he would go to thermonuclear war against Google over their Android operating system, which he believes Google essentially stole.

Today, Apple's dispute with another company, Samsung, is moving to a federal district court in California. This is a separate war. Still, Google is front and center.

Here's NPR's Laura Sydell.

LAURA SYDELL, BYLINE: Apple says that Samsung is ripping off some of its patented iPhone software. Among the five patents at issue are one for secure syncing between your phone and another computer and the ability to sight and fix spelling errors. But, Samsung is expected to bring in many witnesses from Google, which developed the underlying Android operating system used on Samsung's Galaxy phones and tablets.

David Martin, a patent evaluation expert, thinks in this suit Apple is targeting its long time rival as much as it is Samsung. Google and Samsung recently negotiated a deal on patents.

DAVID MARTIN: This particularly case is really an effort on the part of Apple to see how Samsung/Google will ultimately play out when Apple goes after Google.

SYDELL: For its part, Apple says this trial is about theft and it's asking for what many experts says is a very large damage award of about $40 per device sold using those patents. It's taken a long time for this case to get to trial so the devices at issue are older Galaxy phones and tablets - such as the Galaxy 3 and Galaxy Note 2.

However, it's likely that Apple, in addition to damages, will seek to get an injunction on the sale of those devices in the U.S.

Laura Sydell, NPR News, San Francisco.

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