Samsung Scores European Success In Tablet Wars With Apple


A German court rules Samsung's modified Galaxy Tab can be sold in Europe.

COLOGNE, Germany – Samsung scored a partial victory in its global patent battle with Apple over Samsung's Galaxy tablet when a German court ruled a modified version of the Galaxy Tab 10.1 N did not violate Apple's patents and could be sold in Europe.

The South Korean hardware giant pulled its Galaxy 7.7 model from the shelves last year after European courts ruled its design was a too-close copy of Apple's iPad. The ban on the Galaxy 7.7 remains in force.

Samsung released its follow-up 10.1 model tablet in Europe this March, only to be blocked again by an Apple lawsuit. Samsung changed several aspects of the tablet's design, including widening its frame and moving the device's speakers, to win regulatory approval.

It is the second major European court success for Samsung in as many weeks. A British judge last week ruled against Apple in its attempt to block the sale of Samsung tablets in the U.K. and ordered the tech giant to publish a notice on its U.K. web site and in British newspapers to alert consumers to a ruling that Samsung didn’t copy Apple's designs for the iPad.

The Galaxy Tab 10.1 still can't be sold in the U.S., however, after a California judge approved Apple's preliminary injunction preventing Samsung from selling the tablet stateside.

The Apple-Samsung patent battle is indirectly a show-down between the iPad manufacturer and  fellow global tech giant Google. Samsung's tablets run a version of Google's Android operating software.