Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) and Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd. (LON:BC94) (KRX:0059935) have been locked in a battle regarding the mobile phone market for quite some time. Apple is currently the world’s biggest smartphone manufacturer and seller, while the Korean firms has vowed for some time that they will eventually replace them at the top of the smartphone tree. But the two giants have been jousting recently over a rather more prickly issue, which has probably served to embitter the rivalry between them still further.
Apple vs Samsung: Bitter court case
The two consumer electronics manufacturers have been locked in a bitter duel regarding smartphone and tablet patents for nearly three years. This is an extremely important trial for the entire world of consumer electronics, as Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) and Samsung were responsible for more than half of smartphones sold worldwide as of July 2012.
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Well, this intense court battle between Apple and Samsung seems to be finally entering its final rounds. The closing statements from the lawyers representing the two companies were to be delivered today, with jurors set to convene to deliver their final verdict on the epic three-year court case.
Unlike most court cases in which there is a clear role for both parties, in the Apple v Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd. (LON:BC94) (KRX:0059935) case both companies are making claims and counter-claims against one another. Both Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) and Samsung have accused the other of pilfering some of the key features involved in some of the most recent consumer electronics devices be released.
Nonetheless, it is Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) who are the major claimants in the case. The world’s biggest brand has claimed that nine of Samsung’s smartphones and one of its Galaxy tablets infringes five patents owned by the electronics behemoth. Samsung has counter-claimed that Apple has infringed a couple of Samsung patents during its creation of the iPhone, but this part of the case is valued at a mere $6 million by the Korean firm.
One would think that such a claim would be relatively simple to settle, but after three years of intense argument and counter-argument, the case is finally drawing to a close. On Monday, two expert witnesses were called to the stand to discuss the effects of an appeals court ruling in a seemingly unrelated legal dispute between Apple and Motorola. Indeed, the case is so complex and contentious that the closing statements alone are expected to take several hours.
No-one is quite sure how this case will pan out once the jury has collaborated to come to a decision. Considering each member of the jury has been handed 53 pages of guidance regarding the decision-making process, it is tricky to make predictions without being privy to the immense torrent of information that these people have absorbed during this extraordinary process.
The long-term effect of this case is expected to be pretty minimal. Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) and Samsung are both going to remain huge rivals and at the pinnacle of the mobile marketplace for quite some time. But there has been a short-term effect on Samsung’s share price:
Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd. (LON:BC94) (KRX:0059935)’s shares were trading down 2 percent today, and more bad news from the court could see this fall further still.