Samsung demands $6m from Apple over FaceTime infringement

Samsung has struck out its latest patent blow against Apple by seeking $6 million [£3.5 million] in damages and dragging FaceTime through the mud of the well-trodden patent court room.

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The Korean company claims that Apple’s video calling service infringes its own video call patent that has in the past been described as “revolutionary” and is in addition to similar claims made in relation to Apple’s Gallery app.

According to Samsung, the FaceTime app on the iPhone 4, 4S and 5 violates a patent concerning the compression of video before it is transmitted over a mobile network, Samsung illustrating in court that Apple’s software compresses video before sending it to the FaceTime call recipient.

The patent was described as “revolutionary” by Professor Dan Schonfeld of the computer engineering department of the University of Illinois, according to the Guardian, due to the fact people didn’t think it was possible when the patent was first issued in 1994.

On its part, Apple has stated that the technology outlined in the patent is obsolete.

Another patent that Samsung is claiming damages for is Apple’s media gallery app, the Korean company stating that it infringes a patent bought from Hitachi that involves the classification of images and video in a digital library.

At the same time, Apple and Samsung are in the midst of a much larger court case that surrounds Samsung’s infringement of a total of five mobile software patents such as the “slide-to-unlock” feature.

If Apple is successful in that case it could open up a whole range of cases against companies that manufacture devices running Google’s Android OS and help slow the progress of its main rival.

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Samsung has claimed that the two infringements are worth around $6 million [£3.5 million] to them – a mere drop in the ocean compared to the $2 billion [£1.1 billion] that Apple is claiming in the wider case between the two.