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In Korea, Samsung's loss to Apple puts innovation in spotlight (+video)

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In recent years, however, Korea has been bursting with creativity in fields ranging from motor vehicles to music as epitomized in K-Pop groups with global followings. “There is a huge capacity to create,” says Mr. Rooney, “They’ve been schooled so much in the other way of doing things. Copying has been the backbone of Korea’s economic growth since the 1960s.”

The jury in California, after deliberating for three days on a wide range of complicated issues and questions, came out with the unanimous verdict that Samsung had infringed on six of seven of Apple’s patents for mobile phones. The jury flatly rejected Samsung’s countersuit in which it had asked for $421.8 million in damages.

Although the award of $1.05 billion in damages for Apple was far less than the $2.5 billion Apple had asked for, the amount seems almost incidental when balanced against Apple’s desire to keep Samsung from intruding on its markets with Apple-like products in Samsung packages.

Samsung immediately leaped on the implications of forcing the company to retreat as a competitor. The verdict, said Samsung, was not only “not fair” but would deprive American consumers of the freedom to choose between brands and manufacturers, meaning “fewer choices, less innovation, and potentially higher prices.”

In a foretaste of the grounds on which it will battle the verdict, Samsung charged that Apple had “manipulated” the patent laws that form the basis of its case. The verdict, it said, was by no means “the final word” as Samsung pursues not only the US case but similar cases in Germany, Australia, and elsewhere.

It was “unfortunate,” said Samsung, that patent law could be “manipulated to give one company a monopoly over rectangles with rounded corners, or technology that is being improved every day by Samsung and other companies."

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