Its war, iPhone 5: As Samsung getd the Galaxy Tab 10.1 ban lifted, it has formally applied to ban iPhone 5 from sale.
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Judge Lucy Koh, who is the presiding judge in the Apple V Samsung case, has lifted the preliminary injunction sought by Apple to have the rival Android tablet banned from sale in the key US market.
Apple tried to ban Samsung Tab 10.1, claiming it ‘slavishly’ copied the look and feel of iPad, in a prolonged patents battle between the tech titans, started by the former in late 2010.
But Galaxy Tab isn’t out of the woods yet and “after a hearing scheduled for December 6, Apple can still win a permanent injunction over the D’889 tablet design patent if it prevails on the related part of its Rule 50 (“overrule-the-jury”) motion,” patent expert Florian Mueller noted in a blog.
Samsung fought a similar ban on Tab 10.1 here in Australia only to have it lifted by the High Court late last year.
“We are pleased with the court’s action today, which vindicates our position that there was no infringement of Apple’s design patent and that an injunction was not called for,” Samsung said in a statement.
This is a minor victory for the Koreans after it received a major setback last month when it was slapped with a fine of US$1 billion, and found to have infringed several of Apple patents by a US jury.
However, Samsung is appealing the verdict.
But no sooner was the ban on the (now dated) Tab 10.1 lifted, Samsung went after its rivals’ new iPhone 5 this week, adding it to the list of Apple product it claims infringes upon eight of its mobile wireless patents, including 3G technology.
However, the Korean giant is already the subject of an antitrust investigation by European regulators over its licensing of industry-standard essential patents which it is obliged to make freely available to rivals, such as Apple, on FRAND (fair and reasonable terms).
Nonetheless, Samsung said it began its investigation of the Apple smartphone as soon as it went on sale last month and within a week determined the iPhone 5 practiced its patented technologies, the company filing dated October 01 states.
Samsung is now the biggest phone maker in the world and between them Apple and the Galaxy maker control about 65% of the mobile market, in what analysts term is a “two horse race.”
Samsung said it had “little choice but to take the steps necessary to protect our innovations and intellectual property rights” after the filing against its rivals’ popular device was made.
The company is also blaming Apple for the long running patents tit-for-tat patents row. “We have always preferred to compete in the marketplace with our innovative products, rather than in courtrooms,” Samsung said in its statement.
“However, Apple continues to take aggressive legal measures that will limit market competition.”
It is not certain when the case against iPhone will be heard but Samsung are looking to integrate the new claims with the next round of litigation, to be heard soon.
Samsung and Apple are fighting in courts in US, Australia, Europe and Korea.