Apple upset at censored Samsung docs

Summary:In its attempt to show that Samsung was discriminating against it when licensing 3G patents, Apple has managed to get a hold of some of the 3G patent licensing agreements Samsung has with other mobile phone vendors, but has complained that much of the crucial information, including royalty payments has been redacted from the agreements.

In its attempt to show that Samsung was discriminating against it when licensing 3G patents, Apple has managed to get a hold of some of the 3G patent licensing agreements Samsung has with other mobile phone vendors, but has complained that much of the crucial information, including royalty payments has been redacted from the agreements.

As part of the patent dispute brought against Apple by Samsung in Australia claiming that many versions of Apple's iPhones infringe on its 3G patents, Apple is seeking to prove that Samsung previously licensed 3G patents to other vendors that it has not licensed to Apple. Apple's argument is that it was extraordinary to deny the same licences to Apple on what it considered to be fair, reasonable and non-discriminatory (FRAND) terms.

In court yesterday it was revealed that on Apple's request, Samsung has been providing the Cupertino company with licensing documents it has with other vendors for those patents. While Apple was hoping to get the full details of these agreements, Apple's counsel said that the information provided wasn't "intelligible", with much missing from the documents, including information about the royalty payments the other vendors made to Samsung for those 3G patents.

As it stands, Apple argued that it was "impossible" for the company to understand the documents.

Samsung has not yet been ordered to produce the documents in full. The company is still in the process of speaking to the other vendors before releasing those licence agreements on a rolling basis to Apple.

Apple has managed to recently obtain source code from both Qualcomm and Intel for the baseband chips used in the iPhone 4S and earlier devices. Apple counsel Andrew Fox said that US attorneys were currently examining this source code, and it would be used to further the defence that, since Apple used a particular method of decoding, its products did not infringe on Samsung's 657 patent.

"The US attorneys have inspected that code and there is a view that has been formed that there are additional non-infringement arguments," he told the court.

Despite the full hearing of the case still being months away, Apple and Samsung are racing against time to get their respective documents and evidence ready in preparation for the trial. As the two parties get closer to the 9 July hearing date, the number of documents they are seeking to include grows. Justice Annabelle Bennett has kept a short leash on the two parties, however, yesterday ordering that they each produce one-page summaries of the documentation in the case.

The final hearing for the case at this level is scheduled to be held on 12 October.

Topics: Apple, Mobility, Samsung

About

Armed with a degree in Computer Science and a Masters in Journalism, Josh keeps a close eye on the telecommunications industry, the National Broadband Network, and all the goings on in government IT.

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