Apple has been granted a preliminary injunction by a German court (via FOSS Patents), which will effectively prevent the sale of the Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 in all countries belonging to the European Union, save the Netherlands, which is being addressed by a separate proceeding in that country. Existing Galaxy Tab 10.1 units must be removed from shelves and marketing must also cease, according to the court’s decision. It’s just the latest in a series of setbacks that could seriously affect Samsung’s ability to compte with Apple in the mobile realm.
According to German news agency dpa, the Regional Court of Dusseldorf’s preliminary injunction states that Samsung must halt all sales and promotion of the Galaxy Tab 10.1 in the EU, thanks to a stipulation that allows companies to apply for a pan-European injunction that covers all EU member states. Florian Mueller of FOSS Patents says the injunction should take immediate effect in Germany, but additional formalities may be required before it takes effect elsewhere. The new Galaxy Tab 10.1 went on sale in Britain only last week, but Samsung might have to put it back in the box, at least until the company appeals the judgement, which will take four weeks time at the soonest.
Samsung has already had to delay its launch of the Galaxy Tab 10.1 in Australia, following similar legal wrangling by Apple. If Apple can make this and other decisions stick, this is going to put a serious kink in Samsung’s mobile ambitions. Rodman and Renshaw analyst Ashok Kumar shared with us a research report that argues as much, saying Samsung won’t be able to successfully negotiate Apple’s IP blockade, and will have to go “back to the drawing board” to come up with its own IP. That was before this decision came down, so it actually looks even more plausible in light of the injunction.