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Apple COO Tim Cook once said, "We have a very simple view. We love competition, but we want people to invent their own stuff. And we’re going to defend our portfolio when we need to."
No kidding. Apple is currently embroiled in multiple lawsuits with companies like Motorola, HTC, Samsung. And by aggressively adding to that portfolio, the courtroom drama is heating up and isn't going to end anytime soon. Here are some legally juicy events from the last few days:
Apple vs. Samsung: On April 16, 2011, Apple sued Samsung in U.S. District Court, alledging that the Galaxy product line "slavishly" copied the iPhone and iPad. Samsung responded on April 22, 2011 by initiating counter suits against Apple in South Korea, Japan, and Germany. The two companies are now litigating against each other in at least 11 courts in nine countries.
This past week, on August 9, a European Union court in Germany granted Apple a preliminary injunction agast Samsung's Galaxy Tab 10.1, immediately barring distribution across the entire European Union, except for the Netherlands. This ruling, based on an alleged infringement of Apple's European Community design no. 000181607-0001, apparently completely blindsided Samsung.
Today, a Netherlands courtroom had the opportunity to make the same ruling, but the judge -- after apparently referring to the various legal advisors and lawyers in the court as "terriers" -- did not see any reason to grant an immediate injunction. Yet. Instead, he announced that a ruling on the matter would not be made until September 15, and that if at that time an injunction was deemed necessary, it would not begin until October 13.
So, if you live in the EU, and you really want a Galaxy tablet, now you know where to get one. For now.
Apple vs. Motorola: Motorola filed lawsuits against Apple in October 2010, claiming Apple violated 18 Motorola patents in the design of the iPad, iPhone, iPod touch, and certain Mac computers. A few weeks later, Apple filed back with suits against Motorola, claiming infringement on six multi-touch patents.
Well, after winning big in Germany against Samsung, Apple is now setting sights on Motorola in the EU. Apple claims Motorola's Xoom tablet infringes on the same registered EU Community design. It's not clear yet if Apple requested a preliminary injunction barring Xoom sales in Europe, but Motorola has to be concerned.
Motorola responded in an email to CNET that the Apple lawsuit has "no merit" and that Motorola plans to "vigorously defend Motorola's own product designs."
You can follow this author, Adrian Hoppel, on Twitter, if you want to.