Apple demands sky-high Samsung patent licensing fee

Apple wants $40 per Samsung phone for the South Korean company's use of the five contentious patents at the heart of the ongoing litigation between the firms, according to newly filed paperwork. The figure, which comes from a transcript outlining Apple's damages theories from a hearing on January 23rd, comes after Apple argues that reasonable and rational negotiations – in short, had Samsung conceded that it needed to license the technology in the first place – would have led it to value each of the patents at $8 apiece on average.

According to FOSS Patents, which acquired the transcript, Apple's theory was that Samsung would have raised its smartphone prices to absorb the extra cost of patent licensing, passing on the expense to the consumer or the carrier giving out subsidies.

The five patents in question concern certain features around how unified search operates, slide-to-unlock, how phone numbers can be dialed by pressing them, auto-complete, and data sync.

It's not the first allegations of patent licensing gouging we've seen in this ongoing case between the two firms. Back in 2011, Samsung was accused of demanding 2.4-percent of Apple's total device sales in return for licensing a selection of standard-essential patents around wireless tech, a figure which Apple has strongly argued is out of line with FRAND (fair, reasonable, and non-discriminatory) guidelines.

Attempts at mediation between Samsung and Apple failed earlier this year, the companies admitted last month, sending the pair back into court. "The mediator's settlement proposal to the parties was unsuccessful" was all the two would say of what went on behind closed doors, though if that included Apple arguing for its $40-per-device settlement it seems unsurprising that Samsung would demur.