Samsung (LON:SMSN)(SEO:005930) has persuaded a court in The Hague, Netherlands, not to grant Apple's (NASDAQ:AAPL) request to stop sales of its Galaxy Tab 10.1 Android tablet. The pomeaceous Cupertino denizens argued that Samsung's slate looked too much like the iPad 2, but the South Koreans said that the iPad line is hardly the first device of that size and shape.
- On the one hand, vox populi says they look confusingly similar.
- On The Other Hand, as Louis Sullivan once said, it is the pervading law of all things organic and inorganic that form ever follows function.
Plus, today's skateboarding duck: a welcome return to mashup form from Mark "GHP" Vidler...
In case it passed you by, Agam Shah reports the background:
[T]he injunction relates to Samsung's alleged infringement of Apple's iPad-related Community Design...which protects the...product across the European Union. ... Samsung said the injunction request was filed...and the order granted "without any hearing or presentation of evidence from Samsung."
Apple in April sued Samsung in the US for allegedly copying features of Apple's iPad, iPod Touch and iPhone. ... Samsung struck back...claiming infringement of its own intellectual property.
Kate O'Flaherty notes Samsung's retort:
Samsung will try to overturn Apple's ban...at a court hearing on 25 August...[which] will be followed with a decision within weeks. Samsung has also countersued.
Apple has also filed an injunction request...to stop the sale of some Samsung products in the Netherlands and block their distribution...via the Netherlands.
Florian Mueller adds detail and analysis:
[T]he Landgericht (district court) [in] DÃ¼sseldorf...has scheduled a hearing...for Thursday, August 25. ... I'm going to attend. ... I have a hunch that the courtroom is going to be crowded.
It doesn't bode well for Samsung, and it shows once again...that Samsung's press releases on its dispute with Apple don't tell the whole truth. ... On July 29...Samsung had actually filed a "Schutzschrift" (protective pleading) with the court. ... Samsung wasn't forthright enough to admit that. ... Samsung wasn't blindsided -- Samsung knew it had this coming.
This kind of communication strategy...is old-school spin doctoring and only serves to strengthen my impression that Samsung is in a legally weak position. ... [H]alf the truth is sometimes tantamount to a whole lie.
Naughy-naughty; but there is at least some good news from The Hague, says Eric Doyle:
Samsung’s legal team pointed out that there are a number of electronic devices that are flat rectangles with curved corners and large screens. ... [The iPad] design is a result of its function, the...company said. Samsung’s team actually took along twenty alleged “prior art” examples for the court.
Dismissing the Apple argument on the grounds of questionable methodology, the judge...postponed any decision until September 15.
But Erika Morphy's not bitter:
Apple's arguments...are based largely on the similar look and feel of the two devices. Samsung...argues that Apple is laying claim to concepts...such as the tablets' size.
Still, the damage from the injunction will be significant. ... What may be worse, though, is the impact it could have on Samsung's ability to come out with its next-generation device.
Today's Skateboarding Duck...
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Richi Jennings is an independent analyst/consultant, specializing in blogging, email, and security. His writing has previously won American Society of Business Publication Editors and Jesse H. Neal awards. A cross-functional IT geek since 1985, you can also read Richi's full profile and disclosure of his industry affiliations.