While not comparable with Apple’s U.S. $1.05 billion win – which isn’t satisfying to either party by the way, for different reasons, obviously – the fact that Apple has to pay Samsung’s UK legal fees has to mean something for South Korean giant and the public.
When did that happen? Well, in case you missed it, earlier this year the Galaxy Tab 10.1 was declared to be not as cool as the iPad, and therefore it was found to be not infringing on Apple patents. The UK court decided that Apple should apologize to Samsung publicly, on its local website as well as in print. The ruling was appealed by Apple and the company lost.
Which brings us to this fall, when Apple started apologizing to Samsung. It first posted a lengthy message on its website in which it acknowledged the decision but also made sure the reader was informed on other rulings in other similar cases between the two companies, rulings that were favorable to Apple.
That apology wasn’t good for the court, and Apple was ordered to reword it. That’s what the company did, but it apparently changed the code on its website, to make the modified apology visible only if the user scrolled the webpage downwards.
The wording was indeed changed, although the word “sorry” or any synonym of it wasn’t found in it. The same goes for the print apology, which went live sometime between the two online versions.
Which brings us to today, when we find out via The Verge that Apple will have to pay Samsung its legal fees, as UK judges did not find Apple’s apology shenanigans funny and decided to award Samsung a little bonus:
As to the costs (lawyers’ fees) to be awarded against Apple, we concluded that they should be on an indemnity basis. Such a basis (which is higher than the normal, “standard” basis) can be awarded as a mark of the court’s disapproval of a party’s conduct, particularly in relation to its respect for an order of the court. Apple’s conduct warranted such an order.
How much will Apple pay? We may never find out but patent lawyers are very expensive.