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In the latest twist in the courtroom battles between Apple and Samsung, a Californian judge has issued an injunction banning US sales of the company’s Galaxy Tab 10.1 tablet. The decision has led to some observers claiming that Samsung could drop the sale of Android tablets.Judge Lucy Koh ruled that Apple had made a strong case that Samsung had violated its design patent, which describes the front, back and sides of the iPad. She issued a preliminary injunction which bars Samsung from making or selling the tablet – or any similar device – in the USA, pending a trial on the issue beginning July 30.

Analysts said the ruling is unlikely to have an impact on the roughly 30 legal cases between the companies over design and technology patents in 10 different countries.

  • Back in Seoul, Samsung said it expects sales of its Galaxy S III smartphone to exceed 10 million units in July. “We’re getting far better reviews on S III than we did with its predecessors globally … and supply simply can’t meet soaring demand,” raved J K Shin, head of Samsung’s mobile division.

 District Judge Lucy Koh had previously denied Apple’s bid for an injunction on the tablet and multiple Galaxy smartphones.

However, a federal appeals court instructed Koh to reconsider Apple’s request on the tablet.

‘Although Samsung has a right to compete, it does not have a right to compete unfairly, by flooding the market with infringing products,’ Koh wrote on Tuesday, adding the order should become effective once Apple posts a $2.6 million bond to protect against damages suffered by Samsung if the injunction is later found to have been wrong.

Apple sold 13.6 million iPads in January-March to control 63 percent of the global tablet market, according to research firm Display Search.

Samsung sold 1.6 million tablets, giving it 7.5 percent of the market.

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