Apple Wins Permanent German Ban on Samsung Tablet



In the case of a German judge, looks are everything when deciding to permanently ban Samsung’s Galaxy Tab 10.1 in that European nation. “For the informed customer there remains the predominant overall impression that the device looks” like Apple’s iPad, a Dusseldorf court ruled Friday.

Presiding Judge Johanna Brueckner-Hofmann said while other tablet designs are possible, “the crucial issue was whether the Galaxy tablet looked like the drawings registered” by Apple with the European Union’s intellectual property group. The decision makes permanent a temporary order released Aug. 9, instructing Samsung’s German sales division to stop selling the tablet. Today’s ruling does not impact tablets shipped from Samsung’s South Korean headquarters nor to other EU-member countries.

Samsung says it will appeal the ruling, charging the German decision “severely limits consumer choice” and “restricts design innovation and progress in the industry,” according to Bloomberg. The German decision did not decide whether Samsung’s device infringed upon Apple patents. “Our case had nothing to do with trademarks or patents for technology,” the judge said. Apple has contended Samsung’s tablet closely imitated the iPad.

It’s unclear how today’s ruling will impact Apple’s other attempts to block the Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 in Australia and Japan. A decision is expected in the Australian case later this month, while Apple’s complaint is just beginning to work its way through the Tokyo courts.

  • Al

    What an incredible legal precedent! (at least when it comes to these types of devices anyway)

    How the heck can Samsung claim the decision “restricts design innovation and progress in the industry”? Pardon?

    Copying as many aspects of another company’s design as possible is not “design innovation”. Nor is copying “progress”.

    If anything, a decision like this will FORCE companies like Samsung to truly innovate and come up with innovative new designs. And if they do that, Apple may finally actually get some worthy competition, instead of simply a bunch of dull knock-offs.

    Microsoft became a monopoly in their space by using illegal tactics against it’s competitors.
    Apple, on the other hand, in becoming a monopoly in their space because their competitors can’t be bothered to get out of bed in the morning.

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  • Sad

    Sad day… So Apple is officaly a patent troll now.

  • Thermostat9

    Well done Apple, becasue you resort to legal action this makes it look as if you can’t make stuff that is actually better and sell it at a price the market wants.  

    If Samsung is really making something that competes, compete with it! 

  • imajoebob

    Well, there goes every flatscreen TV and LCD monitor in Germany, too.  And all those cars with 4 wheels and 4 doors.  Aldi’s can just close up shop right now, because everything from Aldi-O’s cereal to Aldi’s baked beans will have to be pulled from the shelf. Don’t forget the fans that use spinning blades to move air, and all those bottles with refreshing liquids.

    Germany’s consumer shelves will be down to about 6 items by the end of this trial.

  • HSE

    It’s amazing how you came to that conclusion when it’s exactly the opposite. This injunction proves that Samsung can’t make stuff that is actually better and sell it at a price the market wants. It took Apple nearly 3 years to create the iPhone and it took competitors less than one year to copy it. As a hardware engineer, software engineer, designer, etc., wouldn’t that frustrate you and get you to take action?

    This is just like Microsoft copying the Mac OS UI in the late-80s; only this time Apple is doing something about it. They’ve learned better.

  • Sdfds

    APPLE = SCUMBAGS and losers.

  • Wssdfsfsdf

    APPLE HAS STOLEN IPHONE IDEA/DESIGN from Microsoft, which publicly presented such full functional phone much EARLIER. Truly, you’re a natural born idiot.

  • Ddfsdfdf

    APPLE = THE SICKEST SECT ON THE PLANET, EVER. They’re just WEAK computer builder. Even their OS is a stolen idea from others. I hope earthquake strikes that shhithole and then it will be the end of the sect and greedy Jobs. FOR WHAT he wants all that cash?! For what?! If he’s on a mission he should sell these stupid phones for 50 eur = yes, a world mission to improve life quality.
    Samsung Galaxy S2 is the best smartphone ever invented on this planet, including genius, simple and modern design! Screw you Apple sect!

  • Asszem

    Please take a look at this device from 2006 and reconsider your opinion:

  • Evan Benford

    The only reason i kinda agree with this is how Samsung did a complete revamp of the tablet right after the ipad 2 was launched to make it slimmer and look more like the ipad 2…not to mention those smartcover knockoffs Sammy had supposedly cosigned on…oh well maybe Samsung will learn there lesson. I think Apples bossing em around now so they dont try and copy down the road.

  • Hk


  • Thermostat9

    Good things are always ‘copied’ and the ones that are know they are onto a good thing!  Although I think you underestimate the time it takes to get from drawing board to production, so other ‘smartphones’ were aways coming, the winner (the iPhone variants) was the first. 

    But in this case I think Apple are doing themselves no good at all.  They would be better to let the competitors into the market.  Competition is good  for everyone – not bad. 

  • Thermostat9

    Yep,  Every four cylinder, rear wheel drive car is a homage to the Model T, every monocoque, front wheel drive car, a sop to the Citroen Light 15. 

    It’s a good job Henry and André were not nasty little litigious weasels.

  • SgbN

    Pissed of what Apple did? 
    Stop your patent infringement litigation. Now Apple is flexing its muscles everybody cries. boo hoo hoo… it all started when they made the iPhone.  

  • Chaosmaker

    Did you see the drawings registered? They are simply for a thin rectangle with a screen inside having rounded edges. Did you call that INNOVATION? Don’t embarass yourself. This way only one company would produce TV sets now. And imagine such a patent for books… Sheesh.

  • HSE

    Apple stole the iPhone idea/design from Microsoft? That’s news to me.