Siri helps Apple win preliminary injunction against Samsung Galaxy Nexus sales in U.S.

Siri helps Apple win preliminary injunction against Samsung Galaxy Nexus

Following up on the sales injunction of the Galaxy Tab 10.1, Apple has also won another preliminary injunction against Samsung, this time regarding unified voice search patents (i.e. Siri) and will affect the Galaxy Nexus.

Yes, Google just lost a case about search patents.

For the time being, it will cost them the sales of one of the top Android phones out there. Judge Lucy Koh has ruled that "Apple has articulated a plausible theory of irreperable harm" due to "long-term loss of market share and losses of downstream sales" from the infringement. Apple needs to post a bond of $96 million to offset potential loss from Samsung, which is likely to happen very soon; they posted bond on the Galaxy Tab 10.1 injunction within hours.  Three other patents were dismissed from Apple's complaints since Judge Koh was unconvinced that they played a role in consumer purchasing (slide-to-unlock, data tapping, and autocorrect). Siri, on the other hand, is a different story. Here's are a few key sections of the ruling.

  • "In sum, Apple has shown that claims 6 and 19 of the '604 [Siri] Patent are likely both valid and infringed. Apple has therefore shown a likelihood of prevailing on the merits of the '604 Patent."

  • "In sum, Apple has shown a likelihood of establishing both infringement and validity."

  • "Accordingly, Apple has shown a likelihood of success on the merits of its '647 [data tapping] Patent claim."

  • "Accordingly, Apple has met its burden of establishing that the '721 [slide-to-unlock] Patent is likely infringed by the Galaxy Nexus, and that the '721 Patent will likely withstand a validity challenge at trial."

  • "Accordingly, Apple has shown that it is likely to succeed on the merits at trial in its claims that the Samsung Galaxy Nexus infringes claims 18, 19, and 27 of the '172 [autocorrect] Patent."

  • "The Court finds that the full extent of these losses would likely be unascertainable, difficult to calculate, and irreparable."

"The Court is persuaded by the evidence in the record that the ’604 unified search functionality drives consumer demand in a way that affects substantial market share. Even accepting Samsung's argument that the intelligent voice-recognition aspect of Siri, as advertised, also contributes to consumer interest in the iPhone 4S, Apple has shown that the '604 Patented feature is core to Siri's functionality and is thus a but-for driver of demand for Siri. Accordingly, the Court finds that Apple has adequately established the requisite causal nexus between Samsung's alleged infringement of the '604 Patent and Apple’s risk of suffering irreparable harm."

"The Court finds that the full extent of these losses would likely be unascertainable, difficult to calculate, and irreparable."

"The Court is persuaded by the evidence in the record that the ’604 unified search functionality drives consumer demand in a way that affects substantial market share. Even accepting Samsung's argument that the intelligent voice-recognition aspect of Siri, as advertised, also contributes to consumer interest in the iPhone 4S, Apple has shown that the '604 Patented feature is core to Siri's functionality and is thus a but-for driver of demand for Siri. Accordingly, the Court finds that Apple has adequately established the requisite causal nexus between Samsung's alleged infringement of the '604 Patent and Apple’s risk of suffering irreparable harm."

This is preliminary, and Samsung will have a chance to appeal, beyond the defense against the injunction they had made in April.

Still, this is a massive win for Apple, and a giant blow to Android. The Samsung Galaxy Nexus is the figurehead for the whole platform, and stopping it from being sold in the U.S. is a huge symbolic victory, if nothing else. The big question is, how long will this injunction stick? Will Samsung be able to win their appeal, or will Google have to make some big changes to how it handles voice search in order to convince the judge that they're not just copying Siri patents?

Source: FOSS Patents, @FedcourtJunkie via TNW

Simon Sage

Editor-at-very-large at Mobile Nations, gamer, giant.

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There are 78 comments. Add yours.

iVazz says:

All I can say is, wow.

Gravy says:

I had no idea Google Voice came after Siri, imagine that.

macharborguy says:

Google Voice? Their online answering machine and call redirection service?

Gravy says:

Google voice uses unified search as well, not to mention Siri partly uses Google search as well. Pretty ironic is it?!

macharborguy says:

so "unified search", not specifically "Google Voice".
I wonder which came first, Pre-Apple owned Siri or Pre-Google Voice "Grand Central"

Supafly_Boy says:

I think you need to read Apple's patent description again. The implementation you linked to does not count as prior art as their is no IMAGE relied upon to carry out an unlock. This implementation relies on vertical and horizontal lasers to track a users gesture, which is an entirely different way of achieving a touch based unlock. Maybe that is what Samsung and Google should try to do.

Fraydog says:

So let me get this straight, Apple got the GNex banned over voice search?

  • This patent is from 2004 and is so deliberately vague that it should never have been granted.
  • Apple itself had to purchase Siri so they bought a technology that infringed the patent in question. Begs the question what did Apple say to get Siri to sell out to them.
  • Android had voice search in their phones before the iPhone 4S was released.

Yet, Koh rules in favor of Apple?
The technical ignorance on her part is outstanding. I'm normally one to defend Apple on here, but this is absurd.

jamend81 says:

I know. My Moto Droid and my Fascinate both had voice command/search on there.
The other thing that surprises me is that Siri was actually helpful with anything.

Rob White says:

At last someone else who can tell the obvious idiocy of these judges. This means nothing but to further solidify the divide between iOS/Android/Windows et al. Apple will continue to use the courts to stop competition (don't even start now this "Samsung/Google copied blah blah blah... Apple didn't invent ANY of this in question) until gov't finally drops the big boot on them like they did Microsoft in the late 90s. It can't happen soon enough.

jamend81 says:

I still don't see how anyone can confuse any apple product with any of the android based hardware. Oh wait, a blind man can.

Fraydog says:

There isn't a whole lot of physical similarity between the iPhone and Galaxy Nexus. Nice of you to bring the obsolete and copyist Tab 10.1 back into the equation. However that's not the subject of this injunction. The much broader and frankly poorly granted 604 patent is the issue here.

allmotor91 says:

Shouldn't you be at pre central?

John says:

You're an iSheep Zombie. Objectively, Apple does need to rot.

wow says:

Apple need to compete. But closed source < open source. Everyone knows that.

cardfan says:

Good to hear Apple starting to get some momentum going.

Fraydog says:

The momentum I'd rather see, cardfan, is Apple putting this much energy into fixing notifications, which are a landmine Google can use against Apple.

brooklyndon2911 says:

Dont think google patented notifications.

Chris says:

They are waiting for the notifications patent to be approved. I am hoping that is around the time of the release of the iPhone 5. That is one import ban I will be excited to see put into place.

Apple blows says:

I hate apple and I am happy Steve Jobs died

Danferan says:

Dude, don't be so deliberately evil. It's a cell phone. Don't wrigh that against human life and suffering. Whatever your platform of choice, it's not worth wishing that on anyone.

TomW093 says:

I'm all for open discussions and defending your platform and opinion, but that's way too far. Jobs was an ass, but that's still a human being your talking about.

brooklyndon2911 says:

Get a life and keep your stupid remarks to yourself.

johncblandii says:

It's a terrible thing considering voice search with Google goes beyond Android and is older than Siri.
I doubt it is upheld but if so...I'll buy one next week just 'cause.

Rob White says:

I ordered one from Google just a few hrs ago just cause. And I'm a huge advocate of knowing where things are made first (this is probably from China). But I have even less desire to buy anything from Apple after this type of nonsense. Nor would I recommend their products.

sting7k says:

My Galaxy Nexus was made in Korea. Lucky too that Google just dropped the price to $350.

wow says:

The nexus Q and nexus 7 are all made in America. And being sold at cost. This proves apple could do it but it would cut into profits.

Rob White says:

I know the Q is made in California. But I don't recall reading that the Nexus & was Made in USA. If you're right about that I'll gladly order one not for the new Android 4.1 but because I support American Manufacturing.

Martin says:

Google hasn't lost a case yet. This is a preliminary injunction which is likely to be appealed and revised before there is even a case to speak of. Unless everyone has lost their bleeding mind.

NoNeedForMonkeys says:

If Google voice is the big target then go after Google; going after device manufacturers(Samsung)is a blatant stalling technique. This shows the world that Apple is desperately fearful of competition.
Oh and patent the actual code framework that performs a function, not the concept of a function.
On the bright side, Samsung and Google can now thank Apple for the increased interest and rapid sales.

doublebullout says:

By the time a patent infringement suit against Google went anywhere, Apple would have already lost potential sales to Samsung (and other Android OEMs.) That's why the strategy is to stop the sales before they happen with an injunction against Samsung. Anticompetitive? Desperate? Maybe, but it's much faster than dragging Google into court for years.

Rob White says:

I think it's more indicative that everybody got a real good look at Oracle vs Google & can see for themselves if such a supposed slam dunk case for Oracle, with very close ties to Apple by the way, could go so horribly wrong then why should we risk our luck & have our precious patents invalidated or be forced to drop these lawsuits. That is the truth & everybody that is honest with themselves can see it.

george says:

why doesn't google close off android and manufacture smartphones using motorola which they bought for 12.5B already!
it will force anyone who wants an android phone to purchase their hardware.

TomW093 says:

Because if they have more than one manufacturer making their phones, the platform as a whole is better. You may not necessarily need an outstanding camera on your phone, but if texting/document creation is your focus, a physcial keyboard helps immensely. Other way around if photos are an issue.
You can't beat choice.

James says:

Because Google's target is to capture as much market share as possible and have as much people use their ecosystem as possible. Their approach is working given the immense lead in marketshare they enjoy now... Why would they go against the grain and mess with something that is working for them?

brooklyndon2911 says:

They remind me of Nokia when they were the dominant phone company. But we all see how that's working out fur them rt now. I see android in the same light.

cgrimvii says:

Yes, n phone companies that do everything in house are always successful...look at BlackBerry! U also realize Microsoft does a similar thing with Windows in that they make the software n leave the hardware to others...last I checked, Microsoft was doing pretty well...just saying

TomW093 says:

I can't wait for the day to come when Apple goes back to true innovation and stops suing everyone just to maintain their spot.

Guest says:

At least now we know why Apple keeps pushing Siri in every ad, even though it is barely half-baked. Even a bad product can give you a legal club if you shout it long enough.

kwaku says:

This is not a huge blow, its actually going to accelerate sales of the galaxy nexus, why? People are going to buy it before its ban IF it ever happens. Also soon that patent will not apply, it may even allow google to expedite Jelly bean to the Galaxy Nexus and Apple will not have much to sue on, glad the only thing istuff left in my home is an old G4 which I will be throwing out soon and I have no more rotten Apples in my home.

arcadelion says:

Glad I bought my Nexus back in April

Scout_313 says:

Yet another reason why I am selling off my Apple products. I'm gladly picking up a Galaxy S III at full retail price just so I won't be supporting Apple any more.

brooklyndon2911 says:

Good for you. Who give a s**t

Rob White says:

The same people that care to try & be snarky on an Apple-centric blog. He made a choice & you seem so easily put off by it.

james says:

MDN sure has changed their tune with their latest take.
The last time Apple won an injunction, all we got were snarky comments about Apple’s legal team and hints of MDN’s usual vendetta against Tim Cook when it comes to Samsung.
Calling out the slow gears of justice is a far more realistic and accurate approach.

Aenean144 says:

I read the NYT article and the linked NYT article on Scopeware, and there isn't any proof of anything. It's just a NYT article on Mirrorworlds and Gelernter. They lost their court case against Apple and got nothing. That's pretty much the end of it.
I've yet to see the Scopeware or Mirrorworld UI in actual action. All I've seen are concept drawings. Maybe there is something there, but it wasn't enough to convince the judge.

John says:

I HATE Apple. This is civil, respectful, and on-topic.--
Apple has produced a boring, icon grid... The iPhone is a small, fat, dorky device with less features than any other mobile device. The people who own them think they are so hot, but I can't stand them. I like dragging and dropping media to and from my phone... I like sending files over bluetooth, I like setting any audio file as a ringtone without renaming a single thing...Hey I like files! How about a file explorer? I can't stand the snobbyness of iOS owners. They have less but don't know it....and instead act as if they have iMore

doublebullout says:

You know what I have that you don't? A stable OS and a phone that gets OS updates pushed as soon as Apple releases them with no interference from cell carriers. Booyah.

PaperMate3rd says:

The stable OS argument is such a joke wake up man its 2012 Current android devices are very Stable! Force close here and there yea but not stable? That means unusable. Now before you bring up some old piece of hardware like a Samsung moment or transform or some other entry level device that youd like to use as an example answer me this. When mercedes says best in class are the talking about hondas? No theyre talking about Bmw Lexus so forth and so on. Any dual core Android device running ICS official or rooted is pretty stable. The GS2 is still on Gingerbread and that phone still kills. Im not here to troll or say which is better because its preference/need based. Apple is good at certain things they had to work and refine to get there though. The first iphone for all it had lacked ALOT that "lesser" devices did perfectly fine like copy and paste. Android is young in terms of end product for the consumer. To negate theyre progress with such a foolish staement is the reason why people who say they HATE apple fanboys HATE APPLE FANBOYS its how you sound. Update i agree with you on 100% but i recognize it comes with the territory so i dont complain i research what device i want if the man. Has a good track record with updates. If i dont wanna wait im comfortable with hacking as are plenty of ios users. This war between the two platform consumers is rediculous. You like the notification center good your welcome. I LOOOOOOOVE project butter in the new android 4.1 jelly bean update. You guys set that standard and you know what I whole heartedly thank you. Those new turn by turn maps in IOS 6, your welcome. Books movies tv and magazines in the google play store, i thank you. See how this can work? But this sueing patent thing has gone much to far.

John says:

The data suggests that apps actually crash more often on iOS than on Android. So, that is a bad argument.

SockRolid says:

Awww, poor Johnny.
Mommy will make it all better. Ask her for an Ice Cream Sandwich.

brooklyndon2911 says:

Don't get why people are crying about apple winning an injunction. Google and Samsung blatantly copy apple products and software example slide to unlock which was not on any other phone until apple iPhone in 2007. And Samsung s voice is a total ripoff of Siri. A company has the right to protects its products and those who worked hard at developing those products.

Jeff says:

Really? Apple invented slide to unlock? I guess a time machine was built and traveled back before the i phone came out.
You really sound silly. Like the i phone. It is a goof phone, but do not make yourself foolish by blindly believing everything you are told.

Jeff says:

Should have said good phone but goof works as well. lol

brooklyndon2911 says:

It would have but only if you didn't have miney as your avi.

brooklyndon2911 says:

Never said they invented the feature go back and read the comment. It was never a major feature on any phone until the I phone. And I'm all for competition but google could have made atemped to differentiate that feature from how apple used it.

JCRocky5 says:

Quote "software example slide to unlock which was not on any other phone until apple iPhone in 2007"
You may not have said it but you are implying it with the above. See it was on a phone before 2007 ;) so apple stole it & improved it, just like Google does & just like Apple does with Android features & even the jailbreak communities tweaks :\
IOS 6 is a fine example of innovation, wait sorry, it's not. Apple have taken steps backwards in what they call innovation, innovation is moving forward making something better, not worse, I'm still waiting for quick reply!! & voice/Siri on my iphone4 that is 100% capable of running it, now with IOS 6 I'm being shafted again, from all directions.
My iPhone 4 32gb cost me £600 year & a half ago, beginning of this year I had to fork out another £129 for a refurb as my home button was defective, so I'm pissed I'm not getting what all the fanboys say Apple do, give older devices new firmwares, I'm being downgraded in features if I upgrade, at least when Android devices get updates it's the same damn features + some unique.

jzajzz says:

Ummm .. Galaxy Nexus dosn't have S voice.. this is so stupid .. .

J says:

But they are suing others for something they stole from someone else. Apple= hypocritical.

NorthGuy798 says:

It is impossible to identify a current smartphone on the market that is so 180 degree different from its competition .
All look at each others products, take the concept and make it better. This is called innovation and Apple, as well as Google are very good at it. If anyone out there honestly believes that the big companies don't innovate off of each other, then you've been living under a rock since birth.
What goes around comes around and Apple will also find itself banned in some country for alleged patent infringement...reason being is there are only so many ways to skin a cat and eventually everyone infringes even if they had no intention to.

Rob White says:

I'm anxiously awaiting for Gov't to turn their attention to Apple like they did Microsoft in the 90's. That day is a comin!
I can only imagine the out roar that will come form the Apple community over it. But once Apple has to account for all of that offshore money they hide form taxes, a practice they pioneered by the way, & the sales profiteering (which was such a bad thing when Microsoft did it) as opposed to their greed. Yep I could go on & on but I expect the slings & arrows to come at me pretty ard soon.

SockRolid says:

OMG. The ignorance.
Microsoft used anticompetitive tactics, combined with monopoly power, to crush smaller competitors like Netscape. For example, MS integrated Internet Explorer 2.0 into Windows 95 in 1996, making it nearly impossible to use 3rd party browsers like Netscape Navigator.
Apple, on the other hand, is defending their intellectual property against rampant, shameless copying. Apple has spent countless millions developing iOS, and they're going to prevent mindless imitation of their work.
Oh, and don't try to tell us that Apple is a "monopoly" because they're preventing iOS users from setting Google Chrome as their default browser. Better look up the word "monopoly" first. Plenty of viable alternatives to iPhone and iOS on the market.
Oops. Maybe not as many now that the Galaxy Nexus has been banned. Make that "plenty minus one."

Guest says:

Yes. Interpreting a string of characters as a phone number.
Sliding a finger.
Pointing a search query at two different sources.
Yes, these are exclusive pieces of intellectual property nobody outside of Cupertino could come up with, and should not be allowed to use.

doublebullout says:

Huh? Apple didn't invent unified voice search, even though Apple was awarded a patent for it, but Apple did invent off-shore account banking to minimize tax burden? Wait until the East India Tea Company finds out! Maybe they can sue Apple retroactively!

SockRolid says:

Re: "It is impossible to identify a current smartphone on the market that is so 180 degree different from its competition."
On one hand, there's the Lumia 900 with its soon-to-be-obsolete Windows Phone 7. The Metro UI is very different from any other phone on the market. (Though it might be a little too close to the MySpace look-and-feel to be completely original.)
On the other hand, look how poorly the Lumia 900 is selling.

frozen says:

This is just getting sad. How about everyone just stop suing each other and give us some half decent features. And for god sake Apple, i love the ipad but can you please spend your money on reramping those pages of icons. Its getting quite boring.

SockRolid says:

Sorry. Too much money at stake here. Too much intellectual property theft happening. The suing will stop once the rampant copying stops.

Bea says:

Copying from ALL companies involved.

frozen says:

If you say it like that, then Apple shouldn't use the notification feature like android. The system works both ways, just not for Apple benefit. We need to look at this at an unbiased standpoint. M'kay?

NEFF4G says:

I've had a blackberry a (Samsung)android and an iPhone and honestly my iPhone has given me the smoothest performance. Apps crash rarely as opposed to other platforms. I have no problem using iTunes to transfer everything. And jailbreak has done more for me then rooting ever did. Not being a fanboy just stating opinion if I was going to choose a phone based off how long it will last me and how smooth it will be I'm going with iPhone

John says:

Of course it performs is just an icon grid. It had better perform well because it has fewer features and no widgets. It doesn't even really multitask.

SockRolid says:

Galaxy Tab 10.1 - banned last week
Galaxy Nexus - banned yesterday
Galaxy S III - banned tomorrow?
Nexus 7 - banned tomorrow?

marquizzy says:

Covering your ears and yelling "I can't hear you blahblahblah!" doesn't do anything other than weaken your one-sided argument. You claim people are being ignorant and Samsung is blatantly copying yet Apple has done this with many features over the years. See anyone's comments for some examples. Jumping on Apple's crotch won't change the fact that you're wrong and attempting to blind people of that by being on such an offensive that people have to assume you're right.

droidbeat says:

Wonder if all this goes moot in a couple of weeks when the GNex gets Jelly Bean, on which the voice search is seemingly completely revamped.

ekimes says:

This kind of patents henders the progress of all the phones. Apple just needs to go away.