Apple's Motion for a Preliminary Injunction, Court's Denial, and Federal Circuit Appellate Opinion: Reasonable Likelihood of Success

Apple’s Argument re Infringement of D’677 Patent:

The D’677 patent is the design of the ‘front face’ of the Apple iPhone. Apple argued that Samsung’s Galaxy S 4G and Infuse 4G infringed upon their design patent. Apple motioned for a preliminary injunction declaring that an ordinary observer would find the appearance of the front of Samsung phones to be substantially similar to the design of a front in the D’677 patent. Apple used pictorial, side-by-side comparisons to demonstrate these similarities in appearance between the accused Samsung phones and the Apple D’677. For additional evidence in support of the substantial similarities in appearance, Apple compared the D’677 design and Samsung’s accused phones to the prior art. Apple argued that Apple’s design was fairly different from the prior art, enough so that it “departs conspicuously from the prior art” and that the Samsung accused devices “copied the conspicuously different features” that were in Apple’s D’677. 

Apple acknowledged that there were some minor differences in the design of D’677 and Samsung’s accused phones. However, Apple termed these as ‘minor variations’, which did not detract from the substantial similarities in their overall appearances. These differences were even more insignificant in Apple’s view because of Samsung’s “concerted effort to mimic Apple’s distinctive design while rejecting a bevy of other design options".

The next blog will address the District Court’s finding on infringement of the D’677 patent.

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