Apple experts seek to justify $US380 million damages claim against Samsung

As the high-profile damages retrial enters its second day of testimony, Apple experts explain how the damages were calculated

How much value do you put on certain features in the cellphone you buy? Most consumers probably don't assign a dollar value to specific items, but the detailed calculations handset manufacturers make were at the heart of arguments Thursday as Apple and Samsung fight over hundreds of millions of dollars in patent infringement damages in a California court.

Apple is asking an eight-person jury to award it $US380 million in damages for infringement of five of its patents in 13 models of Samsung cellphones. Samsung says it should only pay $52 million, so the value of the features covered by the patents lies very much at the heart of the jury's decision.

The proceedings are a partial retrial of a case last year that found Samsung guilty of patent infringement. The jury awarded Apple $1.05 billion in damages, but U.S. District Court Judge Lucy Koh ordered $450 million struck from the award after determining the jury miscalculated the amount. The jury will recalculate damages after hearing testimony. The question of patent infringement is not being reconsidered.

Thursday morning's testimony began with John Hauser, an MIT professor who carries out "conjoint" marketing surveys that seek to determine how much premium consumers put on certain features. Consumers are shown two products that are identical except for a single feature and different prices and are then asked which product they would buy. By doing that again and again, researchers come up with a value for each feature.

Hauser's work determined that for a $199 smartphone, consumers would pay an additional $100 for features covered by three Apple patents, and for a $499 tablet, consumers would pay an additional $90 for the features.

The Apple patents in question cover the phone's ability to automatically switch between single and multitouch gestures, the "rubber-band" effect that makes the screen bounce when coming to the limit of scrolling, and the effect of a tap on the screen to re-center the display after zooming.

The court also heard from Julie Davis, a consultant hired by Apple to determine how much Samsung should pay for the infringement. She and others working on the question spent 8,900 hours looking at this question alone -- an indication of the amount of work both sides have put into the case -- and came up with the $380 million figure.

"I absolutely believe Apple lost sales," said Davis when asked about her analysis.

Davis said she looked at three types of damages: profits lost by Apple from products they would have sold if Samsung didn't offer infringing products; a slice of Samsung profits from each sale due to Apple from infringement on design patents only; and the amount of reasonable royalties Samsung would have paid had it licensed the technology.

The two experts are part of Apple's case to justify its damages claim.

Samsung hasn't called any of its experts yet, so its lawyers spent most of their time trying to plant seeds of doubt into the minds of jurors about the testimony and how, perhaps, it's difficult to assign a simple value to an individual feature.

The case is 11-01846, Apple vs. Samsung Electronics, at the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California in San Jose.

Martyn Williams covers mobile telecoms, Silicon Valley and general technology breaking news for The IDG News Service. Follow Martyn on Twitter at @martyn_williams. Martyn's e-mail address is martyn_williams@idg.com

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags smartphonesAppleAndroidlegaliPhoneconsumer electronicsintellectual propertypatentSamsung Electronics

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Martyn Williams

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Father’s Day Gift Guide

Brand Post

PC World Evaluation Team Review - MSI GT75 TITAN

"I need power and lots of it. As a Front End Web developer anything less just won’t cut it which is why the MSI GT75 is an outstanding laptop for me. It’s a sleek and futuristic looking, high quality, beast that has a touch of sci-fi flare about it."

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Luke Hill

MSI GT75 TITAN

I need power and lots of it. As a Front End Web developer anything less just won’t cut it which is why the MSI GT75 is an outstanding laptop for me. It’s a sleek and futuristic looking, high quality, beast that has a touch of sci-fi flare about it.

Emily Tyson

MSI GE63 Raider

If you’re looking to invest in your next work horse laptop for work or home use, you can’t go wrong with the MSI GE63.

Laura Johnston

MSI GS65 Stealth Thin

If you can afford the price tag, it is well worth the money. It out performs any other laptop I have tried for gaming, and the transportable design and incredible display also make it ideal for work.

Andrew Teoh

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

Touch screen visibility and operation was great and easy to navigate. Each menu and sub-menu was in an understandable order and category

Louise Coady

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

The printer was convenient, produced clear and vibrant images and was very easy to use

Edwina Hargreaves

WD My Cloud Home

I would recommend this device for families and small businesses who want one safe place to store all their important digital content and a way to easily share it with friends, family, business partners, or customers.

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?