SAN FRANCISCO, USA - The sales of the Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 tablet and Galaxy Nexus smartphone in the United States were halted by a judge's ruling, based on Samsung having infringed a design patent held by Apple.
The case is a part of the global patent war between Apple and Samsung, in which for the moment neither of the companies is prevailing. The case ruling means that Samsung will not be able to import more Galaxy Tab 10.1 or Galaxy Nexus units in the States, if the decision is not appealed. Samsung, however, is planning to appeal to the Federal Appeals Court in Washington, which has exclusive jurisdiction over intellectual property disputes.
In order to enforce the Galaxy Tab bans, Apple posted a US$2.6m bond, but for the Galaxy Nexus, the value might come to US$100m. This bond serves as a protection if the appeal rules that the ban was wrongfully awarded.
The reason for the heavy patent wars is that competition in the mobile device market is getting tough as sales globally are expected to be more than twice as high as last year. Apple with its iPad is the undisputed leader with a share of almost 63% of the global market. The wide gamma of Samsung tablets counts for a share of some 7,5%, while companies such as Microsoft and Google are planning to enter in the market with more competitive offers.