Tokyo court finds Apple doesn't infringe Samsung patents

The court decided on two occasions that the iPhone maker didn't violate patents related to app downloads and airplane mode.

Don Reisinger
Former CNET contributor Don Reisinger is a technology columnist who has covered everything from HDTVs to computers to Flowbee Haircut Systems. Besides his work with CNET, Don's work has been featured in a variety of other publications including PC World and a host of Ziff-Davis publications.
Don Reisinger
2 min read

Score another one for Apple. Or two.

Japanese newspaper Asahi Shimbun reported over the weekend that Apple won a pair of cases against Samsung over the last several weeks. The first, which came down in mid-September, found that Apple did not infringe a Samsung patent related to application downloads. The second ruling occurred earlier this month, and found that Apple did not violate Samsung patents related to airplane mode.

According to Foss Patents' Florian Mueller, Samsung had also tried to claim infringement against a third patent related to the way in which space is used on a home screen, but so far, that ruling hasn't been announced.

Apple's victory comes not long after the company also lost a case in Japan. At the end of August, a Tokyo judge ruled that Samsung's smartphones and tablets did not infringe Apple patents on music and video data synchronization. Last week, Apple appealed the ruling to a higher court.

If any of this sounds familiar, it's because cases are going much the same way all over the world. From Europe to the U.S. to Australia, Apple and Samsung are waging patent battles that have largely gone nowhere. The only major victory so far has come from a jury in San Jose, which earlier this year found Samsung had violated Apple patents. Apple could net $1.05 billion in damages, as well as the opportunity to ban Samsung products in the U.S., if the case finally shakes out in its favor.

According to Asahi Shimbun, the latest Samsung losses took aim at Apple's iPhone 4 and iPhone 4S. In the case of the downloads patents, the court argued that Apple's application technology is different, and thus, not infringing. The court threw out Samsung's charge on airplane mode on the grounds that the feature, which turns off cellular functions, simply builds upon past inventions, and is not new or unique.

(Via Foss Patents)