Apple and Samsung Fight Over Patent Issues

November 16, 2011

Unlocking Word Meanings
Read the following words/expressions found in today’s article. 

1. suit (n.) – proceeding legal process used to recover a right or claim
Example: Mrs. Thomas filed a suit against her former employee.

2. patent (n.) – an official document  that gives the creator of an invention the sole right to make, use, and sell that invention for a set period of time
Example: Computer manufacturers must follow patent laws and regulations.

3. sequel (n.) – something that follows; a continuation of something already started such as in a movie or literary work
Example: The movie was a big hit so the producers decided to create a sequel to it.

4. litigation (n.) – a legal contest done to resolve a particular matter or issue
Example: The case reached litigation since both parties refused to solve the issue by themselves.

5. countersue (v.) –to file a suit against someone who first filed a case.
Example: The lawyer prepares to countersue the other party.

Read the text below.

Apple has filed a suit at the Tokyo District Court asking to suspend the sales of Samsung Galaxy mobile devices in Japan for violation of patent laws.

According to Apple, Samsung’s Galaxy series copied both the iPhone and iPad. Galaxy devices include the Galaxy S, its sequel S II smartphones, and the Galaxy Tab 7, which is based on Google’s Android Software. These products are considered the biggest challengers to Apple’s devices. Samsung's Galaxy S even outsold iPhone in Japan from January to March this year.

Apple has also filed cases against Samsung in the United States, Australia, Korea and Europe. In fact, a German court already banned sales of Samsung's Galaxy Tab 7.7 last September.

The two big firms have been involved in court litigation over the patents of the smartphone and tablet since April, when Samsung first filed a suit against Apple in Japan. In August, Apple countersued seeking $1.3 million in damages, and the sales ban of Samsung gadgets.

Meanwhile, Japan's top mobile company NTT Docomo launched Samsung's Galaxy Tab 10.1 on its high-speed network. Company president Ryuji Yamada said that the launch will not affect their sales despite the current court battles between Apple and Samsung.

Viewpoint Discussion
Enjoy a discussion with your tutor.

Discussion A

·         Do you know of other companies in your country which have violated patent laws?
·         What do you think is the effect if one company copies the product or technology of another?

Discussion B

·         Do you think that copying some features of the competitor’s product would boost company sales? Why or why not?
·         What are others measures and ways for a company to improve its sales?

November 16, 2011