Apple Blocks Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 Tablet Sale in the US

They might be still fighting in the court to have a ban on Samsung Galaxy S 3 before it Hits the U.S. market, but Apple, in  a dramatic and shocking turn of events, have managed to get a stay order that would almost immediately apply a nation-wide ban on the sale of Samsung’s Galaxy Tab 10.1 tablet in the US. The judge has ordered Samsung Electronics to stop sales of its Galaxy 10.1 tablet computer while the court reviews Apple’s claim that the South Korean tech giant illegally plagiarized and copied the design of the Apple’s popular iPad.This ban will give the iPhone maker a significant win in the global smartphone and tablet patent wars.

Apple last year asked the U.S. District Court of Northern California to block sales of the Galaxy Tab 10.1, firing up a legal battle between the two electronics giants over smartphones and tablet computers. Samsung’s Galaxy tablets, powered by Google’s Android operating system, are considered by many industry experts to be the main rival to the market-leading iPad.

Yesterday, after banning the sales of Galaxy Tab 10.1 in the US, the District Judge Lucy Koh said Apple’s lawsuit appeared likely to prevail. “Although Samsung has a right to compete, it does not have a right to compete unfairly, by flooding the market with infringing products,” Koh wrote in her Tuesday order. She said Apple would be “irreparably harmed” if sales of the Galaxy 10.1 continued.

However, Koh has ordered Apple to post a $2.6 million bond, in case it ultimately loses the case. Judge Koh’s order becomes effective as soon as Apple posts the bond.

In the wake of this court order, Samsung Electronics Co. says a U.S. court has prohibited it from making or selling the Galaxy Tab 10.1 tablet computer in the United States.  Samsung said it is disappointed that the court ruled that its tablet infringes patented Apple technology.

Samsung will likely seek to appeal Koh’s ruling to a federal appeals court in Washington, DC, which has exclusive jurisdiction over intellectual property disputes.

The latest court order is the second decision that rules Samsung’s Galaxy tablet copied the iPad’s design. In 2011, a German court issued an injunction against the Galaxy tablet upon Apple’s request.

Apple also accuses the South Korean company of infringing patents related to the iPhone. Apple is seeking a similar injunction barring Samsung from selling one of its smartphones in the United States.

After Tuesday’s ruling, Apple spokeswoman Kristin Huguet reiterated a previous comment from the Cupertino, Calif., company, calling Samsung’s actions “blatant copying” and saying it was “no coincidence that Samsung’s latest products look a lot like the iPhone and iPad.

Opponents of Apple, meanwhile, say the iPhone and iPad maker is using patents too aggressively in its bid to stamp out competition.

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