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No, Samsung Did Not Pay Apple One Billion Dollars in Nickels

A story you may have seen floating around your Facebook feed about Samsung paying off its billion dollar judgement awarded to Apple entirely in nickels is a lie, and not a very good one. Snopes took on the rumor, which has been circulating off and on for a while, and it’s pretty easy to dismantle. The true part of the story is that Samsung owes Apple a lot of money for patent infringement, as per a judge’s decision in August of last year. A Spanish newspaper quipped that Samsung decided to stick it to Apple by paying in nickels. One thing led to another, and the joke started circulating as a fact.

But it’s not. In order to pay off a billion dollar fine, Samsung would have to come up with every single nickel put out by the U.S. Mint in the last several decades. It would take about 20 billion nickels (only about half a billion total were minted in 2010.) And maybe most implausible is the story’s claim that it took 30 of these trucks to deliver all the nickels to Apple’s headquarters. Snopes estimates it would take about 2,755 18-wheelers to transport the 40 tons worth of nickels it would take to pay off the fine.

Come to think, even if the story were true, couldn’t Apple just make an app to count it all? …

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