Affiliate Disclosure
If you buy through our links, we may get a commission. Read our ethics policy.

Apple and Samsung ordered to reduce patent claims in IP lawsuits


Rival electronics makers Apple and Samsung have again been ordered by a judge to cut down the number of claims they are making against each other in a set of intellectual property lawsuits that will go on trial this summer.

IDG News Service reports that Judge Lucy Koh has given the two companies until Monday to streamline their complaints.

The order, made on Wednesday afternoon, is the second such that Koh has given. The judge warned that the trial, which is currently set for July 30, could be delayed until 2013.

"In a joint statement filed Tuesday in preparation for Wednesday's conference, Apple and Samsung each had offered to drop some patents and claims from the case but said lack of cooperation from the other side prevented greater streamlining," the report read.

Even after winnowing, the two companies had a total of "16 patents, six trademarks, five "trade dress" claims, and an antitrust case, with 37 products accused of violations" involved in the case, according to the publication.

"I think that's cruel and unusual punishment to a jury, so I'm not willing to do it," Koh reportedly said. "If you're going to trial in July, this is not going to be acceptable."

The report went on to note that Apple claimed it "was the only party with an interest in bringing the case to trial on time." The company's attorney reportedly did "most of the pleading" for another opportunity to drop claims.

Earlier this week, Apple filed a request to have the logos on Samsung-branded court televisions obscured from jurors during the upcoming trial. The company has also asked that quotes from co-founder Steve Jobs' biography be excluded from the trial. Samsung has made its own requests. The South Korean electronics maker asked that "Apple related blogs, and articles by non-expert newspaper reporters" be excluded.

The two companies' CEOs are scheduled to meet for court-moderated settlement talks later this month. In preparation for the talks, both parties have been asked to submit a "candid evaluation" of the relative strengths and weaknesses of their claims and defenses.

The legal disagreement between Apple and Samsung encompasses 50 complaints in 10 countries. Apple first sued its rival last April with allegations that Samsung had copied the look and feel of its products.