Join the panel discussion on “Samsung v. Apple: The Future of Design Patent Law and Innovation” Organized by the Electronic Frontier Foundation.
In December 2016, the U.S. Supreme Court issued a historic decision in the Samsung v. Apple “smartphone wars.” The decision concerned special remedies available to design patent owners. Previously, the Federal Circuit had held that owners can recover all of the profits earned on an “article of manufacture” that incorporates the patented design—even if the alleged infringement only constituted a very small component of the final product.
The Supreme Court held that an “article of manufacture” need not be defined as the end product sold to the consumer, but could be a smaller component of the product. The decision restored some fairness to design patent damages. Unfortunately, the court offered little guidance on how to determine the relevant “article of manufacture” and how to calculate remedies for design patent infringement going forward. It is now up to the Northern District of California to consider these critical questions.
This next phase of the case has particular significance for the high-tech sector, as modern electronic products and services often comprise many components that could be subject to design patent lawsuts. The outcome of this stage of the case will carry lasting effects on innovation in the tech sector.
- Vera Ranieri, Staff Attorney at the Electronic Frontier Foundation
- Carl Cecere, Attorney for Hispanic Leadership Fund, National Black Chamber of Commerce and the National Grange
- Matthew Levy, Patent Litigation Consulting Counsel, Wiley Rein LLP (former Patent Counsel at the Computer and Communications Industry Association)
Space is limited. Beer and wine will be served. Please register.
Stock Exchange Tower
155 Sansome St
San Francisco, CA 94104