Saturday, October 15, 2011

Courts Decide That Australia Won’t Be Seeing the Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1

In Australia this week, a court decided that it will be complying with Apple’s request to participate in a temporary ban of Samsung’s Galaxy Tab 10.1. This means that consumers in Australia will most likely not be seeing the newest version of Samsung’s tablet during the holiday season.

Samsung released a statement after the decision was made. It stated that the company was disappointed with the court’s decision, but it would "take all necessary measures including legal action in order to ensure our innovative products are available to consumers."

The Sydney Morning Herald reported that Justice Annabelle Bennett believed that there were several different factors that were in Apple’s favor. Earlier this month, Samsung informed the court that it would consider cancelling all plans to sell the Galaxy Tab 10.1 if they placed a ban on the tablet. Despite this, the Herald reported that Bennett said, "she had to weigh this consideration against the loss and injury that could be caused to Apple should Samsung be allowed to sell the iPad rival."

Samsung had been confident that they would be able defeat Apple with a countersuit which it filed in September, but clearly things didn’t work out as well as they had hoped.

"Our wireless standard patents are essential for mobile business. We will continue to legally assert our intellectual property rights against those who violate Samsung's patents and free ride on our technology," Samsung said.

The Herald reported that Apple released the same statement that it had issued earlier this year, "This kind of blatant copying is wrong, and we need to protect Apple's intellectual property when companies steal our ideas."

Patent blogger Florian Mueller said that of course the issue will not be completely resolved until the full trial has concluded, but by the time that the trial is complete "the product will likely be obsolete in this rapidly evolving market," he wrote in a blog post.

"After today's decision, I believe no company in the industry will be able to launch any new Android-based touchscreen product in Australia anytime soon without incurring a high risk of another interim injunction," Mueller wrote.

"If Apple wins the Australian case at the end of the main proceeding, all Android-based products will effectively be shut out of the Australian market forever, unless Google or its device maker partners settle with Apple," Mueller said. "Therefore, Google and Samsung will have to fight very hard to have the asserted patents declared invalid, or at least have their scope narrowed."

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