Samsung beats Apple on a legal technicality

Samsung beats Apple on a legal technicality

Summary: But, the battle over whether Samsung's Galaxy Tab violates Apple's iPad design in the European Union is far from done.


Don't start the celebration yet, but Samsung, in a technical ruling over Apple, can once more sell the Galaxy Tab 10.1 in the European Union (EU). The battle over Samsung's Galaxy Tab violating Apple's design for the iPad is far from done though.

As reported in the Dutch technology news sites Webwereld, Samsung had filed an emergency complaint that the German court overstepped its power to impose a ban on Galaxy Tab 10.1 sales in other EU countries (Dutch site). Samsung argued that the German court can not decide whether the Korean company had the right to prohibit sales in, say, Italy. The judge, for the time being, has agreed to update the ex parte injunction so that the Galaxy Tab can once more be sold in the EU except for in Germany.

Personally, I never thought Apple's suit against Samsung on the design resemblances between the two tablets had a leg to stand on. That is a matter that will be finally decided by a higher court.

Apple, however, may find winning to be far harder the second time around. That's because it appears that, by design or mistake, Apple's visual 'evidence' that the Galaxy Tab's design was almost identical to that of the iPad had been doctored to make the resemblance closer than it actually was.

In either case, Apple should have a heck of a time winning again. Florian Mueller, a blogger who follows software patent news closely, thinks "Samsung has a pretty good chance that this temporary partial suspension will result in a partial reversal of the preliminary injunction decision at next week's hearing."

In short, we both think that, in the short term at least, you'll soon be able to buy the Galaxy Tab 10.1 in Europe again.... unless you live in Germany. In the long run, I think the Galaxy Tab 10.1 will be made available throughout the EU.

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Topics: Hardware, Apple, Enterprise Software, Government, Government UK, Laptops, Mobility, Samsung, Tablets

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  • RE: Samsung beats Apple on a legal technicality

    it's a amazing that only a tech blog was able to point out the court's stupidity, who is the judge in this case...
    • Eyeglasses anyone?


      At least they finally got around to acknowledging what we saw initially. Someone got their glasses from Auchan?

      • RE: Samsung beats Apple on a legal technicality

        @rhonin Auchan is out of business now, no? ;)
    • but the court docs show that the judge physically handled both devices..

      @tatiGmail<br><br><i>The judge at the centre of the Apple-Samsung patent spat did have his hands on the iPad and Galaxy Tab hardware, dispelling fears that Apple had swayed the ruling by submitting inaccurate pictures of the hardware.<br>According to court documents (in German), the judge had substantiating evidence in the form of "visual inspection of the Galaxy Tab 10.1", so didn't rely on pictures submitted in Apple's original filing.</i><br><br><br>Read more: Updated: Judge did see tablets in Samsung patent case | News | PC Pro <a href="" target="_blank" rel="nofollow"></a>
      • RE: Samsung beats Apple on a legal technicality

        @doctorSpoc Maybe the Galaxy Tab was really an iPad 1 with the Apple logo removed. ;-)
    • RE: Samsung beats Apple on a legal technicality

      What Apple is doing is create confusion within the court due the lack of technological knowledge they have.
      " Apple?s visual ?evidence? that the Galaxy Tab?s design was almost identical to that of the iPad had been doctored to make the resemblance closer than it actually was." I don't believe that the Apple lawyer didn't know about it, he/she knew and did it intentional. It's why they always start well and then nothing happens. They are playing low, and it's easy to see.
    • RE: Samsung beats Apple on a legal technicality

      @tatiGmail It's a sad thing that non-technical judges are deciding the futures of decidedly technical products. Technology questions should be decided by panels of technologically sophisticated people, not clueless judges who can be tricked with Photoshop.
  • Great, now we just need to fix Germany

    Does Samsung have any injunctive relief for the damanges sustained by the ban in both Europe and, continuing in Germany?
    Your Non Advocate
    • Yes


      Assuming Apple loses it is totally on the hook for any financial losses incurred by Samsung.
      • RE: Samsung beats Apple on a legal technicality


        This is ENTIRELY inaccurate. Apple is responsible for legal costs, NOT the costs associated with market disruption. You just don't know what you are talking about.
    • RE: Samsung beats Apple on a legal technicality

      @facebook@... Market loss issues would have to be decided in a separate filing by Samsung. The only thing Apple would definitely be liable for are legal costs.
    • RE: Samsung beats Apple on a legal technicality

      @facebook@... I am sure Apple could cover the loses Samsung would incur from not selling a couple dozen tablets ;-)
  • RE: Samsung beats Apple on a legal technicality

    How does one "accidentally" warp the aspect ratio of just one of two photos to make it look more like the first one?
    • RE: Samsung beats Apple on a legal technicality

      The same way you "accidentally" lose an iPhone 4 prototype
      in a bar??!!
      • RE: Samsung beats Apple on a legal technicality

        @wizard57m@... I'm much more willing to buy the "I lost it at a bar" story. "I accidentally photoshopped one of the two pictures" is harder for me, even if it happened while sitting in a bar :)
      • Exactly

        @spark555<br>To start with, losing an iPhone prototype is not something that is likely to have anything but negative repercussions for you. So, unless your a certified beggar for punishment there is not going to be any reason for a presumption that it was done on purpose.<br><br>On the other hand, photoshopping an image, just editing it in any way, typically requires some positive action on the part of someone, and in this case, because the resulting image would be likely to bolster Apples position in court there is a reason to presume it could have been done on purpose.<br><br>The interesting thing here is, if it was done accidentally its an accident of the worst possible kind. When preparing documentation of this sort for court, one has to be aiming for extreme accuracy. This is necessary because documents of all kinds are presented in court and it happens so often that there has to be some presumption on the part of a court that significant measures have been taken to ensure the document is accurate or otherwise properly qualified on the record as to any anomalies that may exist and why.<br><br>Its fairly common knowledge among lawyers, that to have such a document which has been submitted to the court as being accurate only to be later discovered to be inaccurate in some material way can be disastrous. Even if it was completely accidental, its seen by the court as being careless on the part of legal counsel and the rotten air of possible deception will hang about the offending parties case.<br><br>So, if in fact this was just some kind of mistake its a really bizarre mistake given the very nature of the mistake goes directly to the nature of Apples complaint. Meaning it was the very kind of error that commands due diligence be taken to the extreme to avoid such a critical error, and if it was a mistake then someone in Apples legal department didn't do their job to a completely embarrassing degree.
      • RE: Samsung beats Apple on a legal technicality

        @wizard57m@... Impossible...Hick
    • RE: Samsung beats Apple on a legal technicality

      @spark555 I have yet to see any corroboration that the above photos are the actual photos in the submission. Two can play the fakery game you know.
      • RE: Samsung beats Apple on a legal technicality

        @bargeemike The photos are exactly what Apple submitted. Get over it already.
    • RE: Samsung beats Apple on a legal technicality

      @spark555, as someone pointed out in an earlier report on this issue (too lazy to look it up), the change in aspect ratio can be accounted for by having a PDF with the image of the item set to use "letter-sized" (US measurement) paper, then printed out using A4 (European-letter-sized) paper, with the PDF set to print to the margins rather than keeping the original image ratios.