"Obvious" ain't so obvious if you're living in the future...
Patents are complex, and most lay people on the internet (including this "author" and many commenters here) have only a rudimentary understanding of what is patentable innovation or protectable. They cite "rounded corners" and "swipe to unlock" as things obvious (though, this is just their perception).
Do these people think of color television as an "obvious" change from black-and-white TV? How about a self-closing refrigerator door? Is a lightbulb made up of LEDs patentable or just an "obvious" change from the incandescent light bulp? I'm sure many people would these of these as obvious - but there were/are valid patents on each of these technologies. The reason is, at the time/year those patents were issued, such capabilities were not obvious or even possible, especially to the brightest engineers of the time.
Similarly, there are software patents - many involving specialized algorithms. Algorithms are the "magic" that gives a specific capability through software. For example, routing software in every GPS (critical to even a basic GPS), software-only radios (that powers satellite radios and modern mobile radios), and lossless compression technologies -- all incorporate patentable algorithms. Without patent and copyright protections, few companies could justify the immense resources (time, money, free food) needed to fund their internal engineering teams and skunk-works projects.
Each patent has a long history -- a backstory -- that never gets told. So people on the outside think of it as something very simple. And 30 years later -- those "simple" things start to look "obvious". So that's where we are with many patents. Apple has a long history of patents and copyrights -- for more than 30 years. That's more than nearly every one of their competitors in their industries.
The "rounded corners" issue needs explanation, for those who obviously lack an understanding of the facts. This involved a novel algorithm for drawing rounded corners on screens. This idea came about in the late 1970s. Apple was developing the Macintosh computer (introduced in Jan 1984). At the time, there were no equivalent computer that was entirely graphical. Only specialized "graphics workstations" costing from $50 000 to $300 000 were the only devices capable of drawing "corners" on their displays. However none did - because it was a very CPU-intensive activity. So no company or engineer thought of writing specialized code to put rounded corners (at each corner) of the video screen. Apple (specifically Steve Jobs) wanted his Macintosh to look more "human", so he asked for rounded corners on the original Mac screen. Andy Hertzfeld was one of the lead engineers involved on this, and he said it was difficult to do so quickly. Remember, the CPU was responsible for drawing EVERY pixel on the screen -- which for those days was alone an unbelievable task. And adding a routine to keep drawing rounded corners on the screen would take up more CPU cycles than he felt was wise. Steve Jobs relented, and Andy came up with a novel algorithm to do it with very few CPU cycles. At the time, software was not patentable, so Apple could not protect this "invention". The original Macintosh was introduced with rounded corners (on the physical exterior, AND on the screen). These were symetrical, and constituted a certain "aesthetic" that Apple was looking for. It became a major part of the Macintosh's (and subsequently Apple's) brand.
Even if you don't believe this constituted an invention, it became and mostly continues to be a part of Apple's branding. Meaning, Steve Jobs made it a point to have every new product introduced since then to have rounded corners on the screen. Many shapes Apple used -- including icons -- also had rounded corners. And all of the rounded corners had a very specific shape/radius. Every iPhone and iPad (nearly every Apple product - even their MacBook laptops and iMacs) ALL have very similar rounded corners.
So Samsung's copying of this copyrighted "rounded corners" feature was the same as if they took Apple's corporate logo. Legally, there is no difference.
Since software patents were not possible, Apple obtained a legal copyright on this feature -- their branding feature. Brands are powerful symbols for companies, similar to their corporate logo. And for those who know, rounded corners were for many years exclusive to Apple products. It is a part of Apple's history -- AND it was copyrighted.
So when Samsung started wholesale copying of this and other copyrighted features, Apple made the gutsy decision to sue Samsung. History shows that Samsung LOST the lawsuit and penalties were set by the court. Samsung counter-sued and appealed the decision, which they lost (both strategies).
And now, after the original verdict was again upheld approx. a month ago this year, Apple wants Samsung to begin paying for the damages that it fought hard to prove (and multiple court cases upheld).
So this is not a new case - it is Apple's attempt to get justice for and to remedy the wrong (harmful theft of their branded) done to them by Samsung. The amount they want is not under dispute - the court itself set the penalty amount it.