The courtroom drama between Apple and Samsung has always been more Kramer vs Kramer than A Few Good Me.
An at-times tedious tussle from which neither side has emerged with much credit, it now appears that after years of back and forth the war is finally coming to an end.
This week, a US appeals court ruled that Samsung does not have to pay a large chunk of the $930 million it owed Apple after losing a case in 2012 over patent infringements.
While it found that Apple was entitled to $548 million for intellectual property breaches including the use of pinch–to–zoom and tap–to–zoom tech, the court reversed an initial ruling that Samsung was guilty of ‘trade dress’.
This essentially means that the court rejected the assertion that Samsung copied the overall look of the iPhone.
While that debate will rage amongst the more diehard (or should we say foolhardy) members of each company’s loyal fans, the ruling does at least mean that both tech giants emerge with some credit intact.
Apple released a statement saying it was happy with the decision regarding patent breaches and that the case was never about money in the first place.
It said it was about the ‘innovation and hard work’ that goes into producing its products. That may well be true.
The amount Apple is owed by Samsung works out as roughly the same amount it makes from iPhone sales in a two-day period. Apple does not need the money.
But with the trade dress issue seemingly put to bed, now would surely be the right time to settle up and move on.
These cases have gone on far too long. Already, lawyers for both sides have called a truce in all jurisdictions except the United States.
Now it’s time to clear the final hurdle.
In the current situation, Apple has recorded a crushing victory.
Samsung’s profits may be on the bounce, but last year was a disaster for the Korean company, while Apple posted record breaking figures and saw iPhone sales reach a new high.
Samsung has better things to focus on than court battles. And it seems Apple is already well past worrying about the details.
It wants to be number-one and this court battle surely gets in the way of that.
It’s likely that once final damages are decided on in the next weeks, this case will at last come to a close.
And the tech world can start getting excited about new innovations rather than a 'he said, she said’ fight that’s become an embarrassment to many.