The longstanding legal war between Apple and Samsung has two main points of interest right now, but there are a number of small battles going on besides the big ones that we should keep a close eye on too.
The big fights involve of course the verdict in the California trial that found Samsung guilty of infringing on a number of Apple patents and that could or could not stand after appeals, but also the Sammy counter-attack against the iPhone 5.
As for the smaller battles, one of the most interesting ones has the Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 in the center of attention. The 10-inch tab was banned from sellin in the U.S. way back in June after Judge Lucy Koh granted Apple’s filing for a preliminary injunction against the gadget accused of “slavishly copying” iPad designs.
Sammy filed a number of appeals asking for the injunction to be lifted, but every one of them was denied by Judge Koh, who found it likely that a jury will agree with Apple’s claims. However, that didn’t happen, and the U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Washington ruled a few days ago that Judge Koh can reconsider the injunction.
That didn’t necessarily mean that the sales ban was to be lifted, but fortunately for Samsung Judge Koh did as she was advised and allowed the Galaxy Tab 10.1 to again become legal. “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.” said Samsung immediately after the ruling, adding that “We will continue to take all appropriate measures to ensure the availability of our innovative products.”
While Apple is yet to comment on the subject of the sales ban being lifted (go figure), it seems that Samsung can’t even celebrate this small victory just yet. That is because, as Florian Mueller from FOSS Patents notes, 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”. Confused much? We know we are, but if you take the time to read Mueller’s full post, you should get a better idea of everything that is going down regarding the Galaxy Tab 10.1.
Nevertheless, what’s pretty clear and certain is that Samsung can now start to sell the Galaxy Tab 10.1 again in the States (if anyone’s still interested), and that the South Koreans should think of a financial compensation from Apple, too.
That’ll most likely be of around $2.6 million, a sum that the Cupertino-based tech giant was asked to put up as bond once the court ruled in favor of the preliminary injunction. The $2.6 million was supposed to represent the eventual sales lost by Samsung due to the tab’s ban, but there is no guarantee that Sammy will be awarded all or part of this money. It could even get more, although, compared with the $1.05 billion owed to Apple, it’ll probably still sound like peanuts.
Like it or not, the war continues and there's no truce on the horizon. For now, Apple still seems to lead, but Samsung might capitalize on these small wins. What do you think?