Samsung has gone before the Seoul Central District Court to ask to see Apple’s iOS source code. The goal of seeing the source code is to confirm whether Apple’s iOS 6 infringes on any of Samsung’s software patents. Yes, this is the same Samsung that Apple won $1 billion+ in damages against for patent infringement in U.S. court last year.
Since the innards of iOS are full of valuable company secrets, Apple has of course declined Samsung’s request, “calling it ridiculous.”
The Korea Times reports:
The software technology Samsung claims to have been infringed are related to the function that allows iPhone users to check updated messages, weather information and schedules by swiping the upper-end of the screen.
The Korean company said it registered the patent in November 2006 and the feature was first adopted in mobile devices powered by Google’s Android operating system, including Samsung’s Galaxy smartphones and tablets. The function was enabled on Apple devices in 2011 following an iOS upgrade.
“Apple lawyers said that the issue was a complicated technical matter but nonetheless accused Samsung of claiming ownership of a technology that was already widely in use,’’ said the court official.
So this is connected to the lawsuit from December in which Samsung accused Apple of stealing Notification Center. Samsung says it has a potentially-infringed patent from November of 2006 that is used in Android and on its Galaxy smartphones.
The court can still decide to grant Apple’s request, but the odds are very slim for Samsung. Both Google and Microsoft have tried to take a peek at Apple’s source code before to no avail. While Android’s code is open and available to anyone, Apple protects iOS’s source code to maintain a veil of secrecy. No one climbs over Cupertino’s walled garden.
After proving that Samsung copied the iPhone in court already, it’s ridiculous to think that Apple would have stolen Android’s notification-related code for iOS. While the idea of Notification Center existed on Android first, Apple’s implementation is clearly different (and not to mention cleaner).
Apple and Samsung are involved in over 40 court cases together in more than 10 countries