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Apple must say Samsung did not copy

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High court judge extends Apple v Samsung ruling

Apple has been ordered to display adverts to its UK customers stating that Samsung did not copy its iPad design, in a new twist to the ongoing patent case between the companies.

The ads must feature on the Apple UK website for six months, while they could also appear in major media publications such as the Guardian, the Daily Mail and the Financial Times.

Last week, UK judge Colin Birss’ ruling attracted plenty of media attention for the unusual way in which he sided with Samsung.

He concluded that the Galaxy Tab 10.1 had not infringed Apple’s design, stating that: “They 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.”

Judge Birss has now gone a step further in demanding an additional sanction that did not feature in his initial ruling. American news agency Bloomberg has suggested the subject was raised in the immediate aftermath of the verdict.

Samsung bites back

The sanction is thought to have been imposed after Apple’s negative response to the judgment. Apple claimed it was “no coincidence” that there were visual similarities between the two products, and continued to accuse Samsung of “blatant copying”.

While Judge Birss rejected Samsung’s protest that Apple should be blocked from making such comments, his decision to introduce an extra sanction suggests he may have taken a dim view of Apple’s reaction.

Samsung welcomed the ruling, commenting: “Should Apple continue to make excessive legal claims based on such generic designs, innovation in the industry could be harmed and consumer choice unduly limited.”

However, while Apple is yet to comment on this latest judgment, it is certain to appeal the initial ruling as it looks to secure a similar outcome to its action in the US, where it succeeded in having the Galaxy Tab 10.1 banned from sale.

Tom Glass, creative director at theEword, said: “This is obviously a very embarrassing development for Apple, and just goes to show that its strategy of aggressively pursuing companies it believes have copied its designs doesn’t always pay off.”

Written by James Riches

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