updated 08:15 pm EDT, Thu April 28, 2011
Files suit in U.S., echoes claims made elsewhere
Samsung has now filed in U.S. court a countersuit against Apple similar to claims it had previously filed in Korea, Japan and Germany in reaction to an original patent-infringement suit filed by Apple, Bloomberg reports. The company claims Apple is infringing a total of 10 patents related to mobile phones. Apple had stated in its April 15th suit that Samsung's Galaxy products "slavishly" copied iPad and iPhone technology, design and even packaging. Samsung's response says it is Apple who are copying Samsung's technology without a license.
The new suit intensifies the legal dispute between the two companies and may further damage their already-fragile relationship. Apple and Samsung do business together on a number of levels, including component and chip supply for many of Apple's devices. Apple issued a statement earlier this month saying that it intended to keep Samsung as a supplier and had a "strong" relationship with it but that the company had "crossed a line" that had to be settled in court.
The 10 patents Samsung is claiming Apple violates include methods to allow phone calls and data use at the same time, reductions in interference between devices, increases in the capacity of networks and improvments in the way text messages and attachments are sent. Apple's claims against Samsung are partly related to "trade dress" allegations, alleging Samsung "blatantly" copied three patented designs from Apple's mobile devices. The company also complained that Samsung was infringing seven patents related to user gestures (selecting, scrolling, pinching and zooming).
Apple's complaint seeks a court order to block continued copying and infringement, along with cash compensation and the establishment of a fund for "future corrective advertising." Samsung's countersuit seeks essentially the same terms from Apple. Samsung last year received the second-highest number of U.S. patents, behind IBM. It is being heard in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California (San Jose). [via Bloomberg]