A Samsung Win: Netherlands Court Rejects Apple’s Appeal

A court in the Netherlands has rejected Apple’s appeal to stop Samsung from selling the Galaxy Tab tablets there. The appeals court said Samsung isn’t copying Apple’s iPad, according to the Wall Street Journal on Tuesday. [Subscription required.]

The crucial ruling by the Gerechthof’s-Gravenhage, an appeals court in The Hague, allows Samsung to not only sell the Galaxy tablet in the Netherlands, but also to other European markets from the Netherlands.

Apple has claimed that Samsung’s products look like Apple’s in the shape, UI and packaging. This ruling is specific to the design, and the court ruled that while Apple’s Community design patent was not invalid, the scope is very narrow. Thus, it was found that Apple’s design wasn’t infringed.

Prior art was a factor in the courts’ decision, including the now famous Knight Ridder tablet.

While Apple is in the courts seeking to preserve all its patents and what’s special about the iPad, Apple’s chief opponent, Samsung, is putting up imaginative and vigorous opposition. In this case, the issue is how different in appearance a non-infringing tablet must look in light of prior art.