Samsung Nexus Is Back In Town
Michael Harper for redOrbit.com – Your Universe Online
The Galaxy Nexus is the result of a close partnership with Apple´s Nemeses, Google and Samsung, giving Android fans the purest, un-cut Google experience known to man. As such, it was caught in the cross-hairs between a global battle between Apple and Samsung. Saying Samsung had “slavishly copied” their designs and violated several patents–specifically one involving “unified search,” a feature in Siri–Apple has sought and won bans on Samsung´s Galaxy Tabs as well.
Last week, California District Court Judge Lucy Koh ruled that the Google/Samsung smartphone be banned in the U.S. until a final ruling was reached later this month.
“Although Samsung will necessarily be harmed by being forced to withdraw its product from the market before the merits can be determined after a full trial, the harm faced by Apple absent an injunction is greater,” wrote Koh in her ruling.
“Apple´s interest in enforcing its patent rights is particularly strong because it has presented a strong case on the merits.”
As you might expect, Samsung appealed the ruling on 7 grounds, including that Apple cannot prove its market share has been harmed by the Nexus´ existence in the market place.
On Friday, a U.S. appeals court overturned Koh´s ruling, allowing Google to once again sell their smartphone via their online Google Play storefront, alongside the new Nexus 7 tablet and Nexus Q media player. While the phone is available once more, the appeals court remains tenuous, saying they could enforce the ban once more after they hear arguments from Apple. Now, Apple has until July 12th to respond, which they are expected to do.
According to the Telegraph, if Apple is able to have the ban against the Google smartphone reinstated, the trial between Apple and Samsung could be pushed back as far as March 2014.
As the two smartphone giants battle for market dominance, each have thrown complaints and patent lawsuits against one another. Apple has now successfully persuaded 3 courts to place a ban on Samsung products. Last year, an Australian and German court placed a ban on the Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 tablet on charges that it looked too closely to Apple´s iPad.
Judge Koh also placed a ban on the Tab days before she ruled to ban the Nexus smartphone.
Apple has also sought to ban as many as 25 of Samsung´s other products, including their new and widely popular Galaxy S III smartphone which only made its way to American soil in recent weeks. Already a hit, the S III became the most pre-ordered phone at some UK retailers. In fact, President of Samsung Mobile Communications Shin Jong-kyun said last month that his company expects to sell more than 10 million units by the end of July.
Colleen Chien, a professor at Santa Clara Law in Silicon Valley told the Telegraph she was surprised Apple was performing so well in the courtroom.
“That this was a design patent and copying was alleged distinguish this case from plain vanilla utility patent cases. Cases involving these kinds of patents are based more on a counterfeiting theory than a competition theory, so I don’t expect this case to have ramifications for all smartphone disputes, but rather those involving design patents and the kind of product resemblance we had here.”
Barring any changes, the epic showdown between Apple and Samsung is expected to begin on July 30, 2012.