Samsung throws Velocity under the bus in “unconscionable” lawsuit says CEO Randy Copeland



We’re all familiar with the Apple vs. Samsung legal battles, but a new rivalry is brewing between industry juggernauts, and it seems some small businesses may get decapitated by the shrapnel. First NVIDIA sued Samsung, then Samsung retaliated with a lawsuit of their own to which NVIDIA boastfully responded. While these two companies spar it seems a small company in Virginia is being used as a pawn in their legal chess match.

Velocity Micro CEO Randy Copeland took to their company’s blog to acknowledge the situation:

“Samsung has decided to drag us in to its legal battle with Nvidia purely for the purpose of claiming that the Federal District Court for Virginia’s Eastern District here in Richmond, also informally known as “the rocket docket” by some, is a reasonable jurisdiction for their litigation. They tactically need Velocity, a Richmond company, to be part of this new suit so they can have a faster time to trial to counter their lawsuits with Nvidia that are pending in those other courts. They are trying to beat Nvidia to the punch on other fronts, but they are all too willing to throw a private company under the proverbial bus for their own strategic reasons. It’s simply wrong, and a shining example of what’s broken in big corporate America.”

Phandroid cannot speak to the validity of these claims; patents are complicated things which is why it will take full legal teams months of diving through hundreds of pages of literature to concoct arguments and defenses. Maybe Velocity Micro is right and it’s just about geographical strategy. Maybe Samsung is right and Velocity has violated patents. That’s for the courts to determine.

What we are sure of, though, is that Samsung’s legal team is much larger than that of Velocity Micro’s (and that may be the understatement of the year). Whereas it’s just another day in court for Samsung, defending against Samsung can and will effect smaller businesses dramatically as Copeland explains:

“precious company resources and energy will be diverted from our core business and wasted to fight one of the world’s largest companies, just so they can play legal games with Nvidia and the court system.”

We sincerely hope that Samsung isn’t systematically using Velocity as a stepping stool to get to NVIDIA, disregarding the dramatic effect it could have on their business, but Velocity’s CEO insists that’s exactly what’s going on:

“Comparatively, we are a small private business, and have absolutely nothing to do with the disputes between these business giants. This is not our fight, and it’s unconscionable that Samsung is willing to completely disregard the effects and financial fallout this legal tactic will have on the undeserving employees of Velocity Micro and our local community.”

We love technology, but with billions of dollars at stake, this is one of the unfortunate realities that rears its ugly head. Once again, Phandroid has absolutely no opinion on who is right or wrong in this particular situation, we’re merely extending the opinion of Velocity CEO Randy Copeland whose complete statement can be read here.

But we know you – our readers – always have an opinion and always have something to say, so enlighten us. Vote in the poll below and head to the comments to explain your opinion on the NVIDIA, Samsung, Qualcomm, Velocity Micro spat and the state of patent lawsuits in tech in general.

[polldaddy poll=8443986]

Rob Jackson
I'm an Android and Tech lover, but first and foremost I consider myself a creative thinker and entrepreneurial spirit with a passion for ideas of all sizes. I'm a sports lover who cheers for the Orange (College), Ravens (NFL), (Orioles), and Yankees (long story). I live in Baltimore and wear it on my sleeve, with an Under Armour logo. I also love traveling... where do you want to go?

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  1. Appl…. Err Samsung seems like they may have picked up some nasty habits from another large company people dislike around here.

    1. Yeah Samsung jumped the shark years ago, I’ve refused to buy anything from them since then.

      1. Same as many millions stopped buying apple products for the same reason. Oh well.

        1. Takes a troll to bring irrelevant parties to a conversation. Apple has nothing to do with this fight….although interesting enough Samsung always seem to be one of the parties involved in these cases.

          There is nothing special about Apple suing Samsung…they had to join the queue like everyone else.

          1. Hook, line, and sinker. Bravo to you!! Thanks for the morning laugh. I’m still giggling.

  2. I’m not a lawyer and I don’t have all the facts in front of me but I’m 99% sure that all of them are using each others patents across the board. Yep 99% positive.

  3. How could Velocity Micro infringe any patents? They just build computers. I’m 100% in VM’s camp and find what their CEO says totally valid.

  4. Its funny how he did not say his company does not infringe on any of samsung’s patents.

    1. Goes without saying, they don’t make chipsets. If they are infringing then every PC manufacturer who uses NVIDIA graphics cards is infringing as well.

      1. I don’t think it matters. I am not a lawyer but I remember when Nokia sued HTC and the supplier of the speaker they used on the M7, HTC had to change the speaker.

        1. Maybe HTC contributed to the design of the speakers? I’m sure it has happened, but it’s not normal to sue users of off-the-shelf components.

          If Sammy really think Velocity Micro is infringing, why aren’t they suing every other PC manufacturer that uses NVIDIA parts? Heck, why aren’t they suing every individual who owns an NVIDIA graphics card or a tablet with a Tegra chip?

          1. Because they don’t have to and its a waste of their money just like apple isn’t suing every chinese manufacturer thats ripping them off. Samsung picked a company they can sue to get to Nvidia which is worth the money and resources to them. Its messed up but its just business for them.

  5. If you want to run/play with the big dogs… should be prepared to step in the doo doo, I’m sure if the courts find Samsung’s lawsuit is without merit velocity will be able to recover all financial losses and then some, a smart move would be to try to use this to their advantage, it’s probably the most publicity they will ever get, has to be a way to leverage this.

    1. But Velocity isn’t trying to “run/play with the big dogs”. They make a small PC manufacturer, who happens to use a lot of NVIDIA products. As far as I know, they don’t make chipsets at all.

      1. No?
        I guess they aspire to be the little fish in the pond, well welcome to big business.
        I’m not saying it’s right it just is.

        1. Do you own any NVIDIA graphics cards? Phones or tablets with Tegra chips? If yes, I guess Sammy should sue you too. Welcome to big business.

          1. Why so uptight sports fan?
            Relax man you sound like I insulted your girlfriend or something egregious, I’m just stating my opinion just like everyone else here.

          2. Not uptight… but you’re implying this isn’t a big deal, just business. A giant corporation is wiping out a small company just so that they can get the court they prefer for their real lawsuit against another giant corporation.

          3. It is a big deal I’m just giving my take on it, this happens all the time, the big business crushing the smaller one, this is getting play because of Samsung’s name and reputation the same way Apple is trying to be made to look like the bad guy with the situation with Gt Advanced, a lot of people rushing to judgment without knowing the facts behind it.
            I’m not happy in anyway shape or form, I get the fact that people’s livelihoods are at stake in this and it exposes the glaring fact that many parts of the legal system are broken.
            Again I’m not saying it’s right it just is.

          4. Big business certainly often crushes small competitors, but in this case, Velocity isn’t even really a competitor to Samsung, they’re just caught in the crossfire between Samsung and NVidia.

          5. Sad but true, but for every story that makes the news countless others we don’t hear about for various reasons, just like the countless civilians caught in the cross fire in all the war zones around the world or victims of gang violence.
            In a perfect world it wouldn’t happen, but as we both know we live in a un perfect world.
            Best to you and yours in the holiday season I hope that you enjoy it in health and happiness.)

    2. You have zero idea what you’re talking about. Did you even read the article?

      “if the courts find Samsung’s lawsuit is without merit velocity will be able to recover all financial losses and then some”

      Not if the company goes bankrupt first. And how many tears do you think Samsung will shed if they do?

      Samsung mobile is hands down the most evil smartphone OEM on Earth. They steal intellectual property and then force companies to fight it out in the courts later, violate open source licenses, have terrible labor conditions and no supplier accountability agreements, internal emails were leaked about their excitement over Steve Job’s death, their keynote presentations are unwatchable and embarrassing, their strong-armed product placement strategy is ethically dubious at best and they are openly hostile to the developer community. And to top it all off: their products aren’t very good.

      1. Did you type that out on your iPhone?

        1. Sony Xperia Z Ultra CM11

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