In a Galaxy not so far away, the smart phone rebellion is getting organised
The patent wars continue. Last month Apple succeeded to block Samsung from selling its Galaxy Tab in Germany, claiming the South Korean company had stolen the iPad’s design. It also successfully banned the sale of three other competitors of the iPhones in the Netherlands, amid similar allegations, and following months of legal manoeuvres against its rivals. So now Samsung strikes back.
Today we learn that the Korean group is considering a legal move to ban sales of the new iPhone in several countries, possibly Europe or South Korea. This time, however, the case would rely on wireless technology patents, deemed stronger than design property rights. A Korean victory would deal a powerful blow to Apple - experts say it’s virtually impossible to build a smart phone without Samsung wireless technology.
Could this just be the early skirmish of a global war? Maybe. Another front is already about to open: last month Google announced the purchase of Motorola Mobility, in a move widely seen as a naked attempt to grab technology patents and use them to attack Apple on several flanks. More could follow.
Could Apple lose the battle? Probably not, but it may suffer some casualties. It seems the firm is well positioned to defend its design treasures, but less so when it comes to fight with technology patents. Whatever the result, the firm may just be getting what it deserves - the fruit of a rather aggressive use of property rights.