Samsung did not copy the design of the iPad with its Galaxy Tab tablet, and Apple has to apologize for accusing it of doing so. Isn’t the legal system fantastic.
Apple is an excellent company which produces excellent products. Unfortunately it has a weak spot, which is its continual need to fight other companies over design patents. These lawsuits have been keeping the legal profession busy around the world, and in the U.S. Apple has enjoyed some success. But elsewhere things have played out a little differently.
In the U.K. Apple had its claims against Samsung’s Galaxy Tab thrown out, with the judge stating in July that the Samsung products “do not have the same understated and extreme simplicity which is possessed by the Apple design. They are not as cool. The overall impression produced is different.”
Apple appealed that decision but, according to BBC News, the High Court in London has ruled that the original decision should stand. One of the judges suggested that Samsung’s logo on the front, the completely different edges, and the “altogether busier” look of the Galaxy Tab were enough to differentiate it from the iPad.
As if to add insult to injury Apple will now be forced to apologize for accusing Samsung of slavishly copying the iPad, with ads run in several newspapers and magazines, and a notice placed on the Apple website, detailing the judgment.
Interestingly this ruling applies across the whole of the European Union, so unless Apple lodges an appeal with the British Supreme Court and then consequently wins, Samsung has 27 countries to sell its tablets in without fear of legal reprisals.
Is it perhaps not a little strange that Apple, an American company through and through, has only really succeeded in haranguing Samsung and others over its design patents in the U.S.? Or is that nothing more than my in-built cynicism shining through.