Samsung seeking workaround for Dutch smartphone ban - Mobile World Live

Samsung seeking workaround for Dutch smartphone ban

13 OCT 2011

Samsung plans to avoid the sales ban on its smartphones in the Netherlands by altering the devices to not include technology that Apple claims infringes its patents, reports the Wall Street Journal.

In August, a court in The Hague ruled that Samsung’s Dutch business could not sell the Galaxy S, S II and Ace smartphones across Europe as it violated Apple scrolling and browsing patents. However, the non-Dutch part of Samsung is still allowed to sell the devices outside the Netherlands.

Samsung spokesman James Chung told the Wall Street Journal that the technology in the Samsung devices that Apple claims violates its patents can be easily modified. The tweaked phones should go on sale in the Netherlands this month.

Chung also said the company may follow this approach in other markets where Apple is seeking to or has already secured a ban for Samsung smartphones and tablets.

The Samsung spokesman added that the company will continue its legal battle with Apple in the Netherlands after filing four lawsuits in a Dutch court in September seeking to ban the sale of iPhones and iPads in the country, due to the devices violating Samsung technology patents.

Apple first accused Samsung of infringing its patents when it sued the South Korean company, accusing it of “slavishly” copying the iPhone and iPad with its smartphones and tablets and infringing some of its design and user interface patents. Samsung has filed claims alleging that Apple violated its wireless technology patents with the iPhone and iPad.

The companies have filed suits against each other all over the world, including Australia, France, Japan, South Korea and Germany, where a court imposed a temporary halt on the sale of Samsung tablet computers in the country. Both companies have also filed complaints with the International Trade Commission.

Meanwhile, Samsung has lost its bid to sell its latest Galaxy Tab 10.1 tablet computer in Australia after a Federal Court granted Apple’s request for an injunction to block the sale of the device until the patent dispute is settled by a trial, reports Bloomberg. Samsung has reportedly said it would abandon plans to release the Galaxy Tab 10.1 in Australia if the injunction was granted.

According to Bloomberg the two companies will go to court tomorrow to find out if Samsung can sell a modified tablet that doesn’t include the technology in question.

Analysts suggest that the legal tussle between the two companies may eventually result in a cross-licensing deal for the patents in questions.

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Tim Ferguson

Tim joined Mobile World Live in August 2011 and works across all channels, with a particular focus on apps. He came to the GSMA with five years of tech journalism experience, having started his career as a reporter... More

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