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Apple, Samsung to face off in court again on patents

Apple and Samsung return to a California court this week for another round in the blockbuster patent trial between the two biggest smartphone makers.

A jury trial opens Tuesday to reconsider damages awarded last year in the case stemming from Apple’s allegation that its South Korean rival illegally copied technology from the iPhone and iPad.

The new trial became necessary after a judge cut some $450 million from a damage award of more than $1 billion to be paid by Samsung.

Judge Lucy Koh, in her ruling in March, affirmed the remainder of the award, amounting to $598.9 million. But a new trial must be held to reconsider some of the allegations.

Apple accused its rival of massive and willful copying of its designs and technology for smartphones and tablets and won the landmark case in a jury decision in August 2012. But the case has been on hold pending multiple appeals.

The California case is among several pending in courts and administrative agencies around the world between the two electronics giants, each of which accuses the other of infringing on its patents.

After years of following and refining the iPhone’s pioneering innovations — a strategy that resulted in bitter patent battles with Apple — Samsung has dethroned its California-based rival to become the world’s top smartphone maker.

Judge Koh set the jury trial to start Tuesday and, if the case drags on, the jury could pause for the Thanksgiving holiday from November 27 to December 1, and resume on December 2.

Even though Apple won its case, this has not had much impact on the new smartphones hitting the market.

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Samsung extended its lead over Apple in the global smartphone market in the third quarter, according to surveys.

The South Korean electronics giant increased its market share by nearly half a percentage point to 31.4 percent, according to the IDC survey. Apple sold 33.8 million iPhones in the quarter, but its growth was slower than the overall market, so its share slipped to 13.1 percent from 14.4 percent a year ago.

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