Samsung looks to preemptively ban next iPhone from Korea

Samsung logoSamsung may be planning more aggressive tactics against its number one customer, Apple, after legal setbacks in Germany and The Netherlands. The Korean-based company will move to have Apple's next-generation iPhone banned from sale in Korea following EU-wide injunctions issued against Samsung's tablets and smartphones in those countries.

"Just after the arrival of the iPhone 5 here, Samsung plans to take Apple to court here for its violation of Samsung's wireless technology related patents," an unnamed senior executive from Samsung Electronics told The Korea Times. "For as long as Apple does not drop mobile telecommunications functions, it would be impossible for it to sell its i-branded products without using our patents. We will stick to a strong stance against Apple during the lingering legal fights."

Apple won an injunction against Samsung's Galaxy Tab 10.1 tablet in Germany, which was recently upheld after an appeal hearing. Samsung recently had to pull its Galalxy Tab 7.7 device from its official unveiling at the IFA conference in Berlin after Apple moved to have that device covered by a similar injunction. Apple also won an EU-wide injunction against Samsung's Galaxy S, Galaxy SII, and Ace handsets in The Netherlands. Additionally, Samsung has delayed the release of the Galaxy Tab 10.1 in Australia as a similar injunction proceeding is in progress in that country.

Meanwhile, as many as 23 separate legal proceedings are currently underway between the two mobile device rivals in France, Italy, UK, US, Japan, and Korea. A hearing on Apple's proposed preliminary injunction against Samsung is set for October 13 here in the US. Most recently, Apple filed for an injunction against Samsung's tablets and smartphones in Japan.

As one of the largest component suppliers for Apple, Samsung has skated a fine line as the legal battle between the two companies has grown increasingly heated. Apple has accused Samsung of "slavishly [copying] Apple’s innovative technology, distinctive user interfaces, and elegant and distinctive product and packaging design." With rumors that Apple may be moving to other suppliers, Samsung may feel stepping up its legal maneuvers is worth the risk.

"Apple is Samsung's biggest customer," Samsung CEO Choi Gee-sung told reporters recently. "Hewlett-Packard, Nokia, and Sony were Samsung's previous big clients, however, Apple is now a primary one. From our perspective, we are not entirely happy [about the litigations]," he said.

Source: Ars Technica

Tags: Apple, iPhone, legal action, mobile phones, Samsung

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