Another Apple-Samsung Case Heads to Court

By Martha Mendoza

SAN JOSE, Calif. -- The fiercest rivalry in the world of smartphones is heading back to court this week in Silicon Valley, with Apple (AAPL) and Samsung accusing each other, once again, of ripping off designs and features.

The trial will mark the latest round in a long-running series of lawsuits between the two tech giants that underscore a much larger concern about what is allowed to be patented.

"There's a widespread suspicion that lots of the kinds of software patents at issue are written in ways that cover more ground than what Apple or any other tech firm actually invented," Notre Dame law professor Mark McKenna said. "Overly broad patents allow companies to block competition."

The latest Apple-Samsung case will be tried less than two years after a federal jury found Samsung was infringing on Apple patents. Samsung was ordered to pay about $900 million but is appealing and has been allowed to continue selling products using the technology.

Now, jury selection is scheduled to begin Monday in another round of litigation, with Apple accusing Samsung of infringing on five patents on newer devices, including Galaxy smartphones and tablets. In a counterclaim, Samsung says Apple stole two of its ideas to use on iPhones and iPads.

"Apple revolutionized the market in personal computing devices," Apple attorneys wrote in court filings. "Samsung, in contrast, has systematically copied Apple's innovative technology and products, features and designs, and has deluged markets with infringing devices."

Samsung countered that it has broken technological barriers with its own ultra-slim, lightweight phones.

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