Apple will be able to continue selling the iPhone 4S in France unimpeded, according to a court decision on Thursday. The Tribunal de Grande Instance de Paris has denied a request by Samsung to secure a preliminary injunction against the sale of the 4S.
The ruling was reported by Le Figaro‘s Benjamin Ferran (hat tip to FOSS Patents), who tweeted the results while in attendance at the hearing. Ferran said that the court had rejected Samsung’s request because it seemed a “disproportionate” measure, given the facts of the case. In addition to rejecting the ban, the court also ordered Samsung to pay Apple’s legal fees, in the amount of 100,000€ (around $134,090).
This is definitely a setback for Samsung, which has recently racked up a number of small victories in its ongoing legal battles with Apple, including the rejection of an Apple motion for a U.S. ban on some of its products last week and the reversal of an injunction against the Galaxy Tab 10.1 in Australia. Next up in Europe, Samsung and Apple will participate in a second hearing on Dec. 16 to determine the validity of an iPhone 4S injunction request in Italy.
Samsung and Apple are also both being looked into by the European Commission to determine whether or not they are using their held patents in a way that might constitute anticompetitive behavior. No doubt both the case in France and the one in Italy will be looked at closely as part of that investigation.