Germany upholds Samsung Android tablet ban for now

A Duesseldorf court has upheld a temporary injunction barring Samsung from selling its Galaxy Tab 10.1 tablet in Germany.

A Duesseldorf court has upheld a temporary injunction barring Samsung from selling its Galaxy Tab 10.1 tablet in Germany.

On Thursday, a judge said the ban should remain in place for now, ahead of a full ruling on the matter on 9 September. Apple achieved the ban by saying Samsung's tablet infringed on design rights that should be exclusive to the iPad line, but Samsung subsequently pleaded with the court to lift the injunction.

According to courtroom Twitter reportage from Webwereld reporter Andreas Udo de Haes, the day's arguments between Samsung and Apple's lawyers descended into a war of words over the veracity of pictures submitted by Apple to prove the similarity between the two tablets. Samsung apparently said it had compiled 27 examples of such pictures being distorted, and Apple's lawyers replied with a threat of legal action, he wrote.

De Haes also indicated that the day saw the removal from Apple's injunction application of some claims relating to Samsung's alleged imitation of the iPad design.

The evidence of distortion was not enough to sway the district court judge, whose Duesseldorf jurisdiction is noted for being on the side of rights-holders.

Separately on Wednesday, a Dutch court issued a temporary ban on the sale of Galaxy smartphones, in another case initiated by Apple. That judge, however, only issued the injunction of the basis of a single technical patent being violated, and did not consider Samsung to have violated Apple's 'Community' design with its Android tablet.

The European Commission is keeping an eye on the situation, digital agenda commissioner Neelie Kroes said on Thursday. "We're following [the] Dutch and German cases closely," Kroes said in a Twitter post.

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