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Apple Wins Retail Ban on Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 in US

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Apple has won a significant ruling against Samsung today, with a US judge granting a full US retail ban on Samsung’s Galaxy Tab 10.1 tablet due to it infringing on just one patent.

Apple will have to hand over a bond of £2.6m to cover any potential losses Samsung might incur if the ruling is over-turned in the near future.

The judge, Judge Lucy Koh, explained that she had to take into account both Apple’s hardship of competing with a product that infringes its own products and the fact that Samsung could possibly lose sales.

She came to the conclusion the Apple’s grievances outweighed Samsung’s and implemented a US retail ban as of today.

“Although Samsung has a right to compete, it does not have a right to compete unfairly, by flooding the market with infringing products,” she said.

Its been a rocky road for Apple and their various patent disputes this week – they had their case against Motorola kicked out earlier this week, but today’s ban is seen as significant win.

Of course, Samsung has the right to appeal the decision at the US appeal court in Washington – but it’s thought by many commentators that the real loser with be Joe public who will ultimately have less choice.

“Apple sought a preliminary injunction of Samsung’s Galaxy Tab 10.1, based on a single design patent that addressed just one aspect of the product’s overall design,” Samsung said in its defence.

Bullishly Samsung said it wasn’t all that bothered by the ban as they already sell plenty of Galaxy Tab products in the US, and not just the specific 10.1 variant.

Apple retaliated by saying that Samsung had completely ripped-off their products and would continue to defend their patents.

“It’s no coincidence that Samsung’s latest products look a lot like the iPhone and iPad, from the shape of the hardware to the user interface and even the packaging,” a spokesperson said.

“This kind of blatant copying is wrong and, as we’ve said many times before, we need to protect Apple’s intellectual property when companies steal our ideas.”

Quite where this is all going remains unclear, but it’s thought that if Apple wins they might go after other Android tablet makers, but only time will tell.

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