Before first sale, iPhone 5 already a legal target for Samsung

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Samsung’s trying really hard to rain on Apple’s iPhone 5 parade. On Thursday, one day before the first round of iPhone 5 shipments reach consumers’ hands, Samsung threatened to include the device in an ongoing patent lawsuit targeting Apple.

The news come from a new court document filed by the Korean smartphone maker. According to Reuters:

‘Samsung anticipates that it will file, in the near future, a motion to amend its infringement contentions to add the iPhone 5 as an accused product,’ the company said in a U.S. court filing.

‘Based on information currently available, Samsung expects that the iPhone 5 will infringe the asserted Samsung patents-in-suit in the same way as the other accused iPhone models.’

Samsung, you’ll remember, has already been found to have infringed on a bevy of Apple’s mobile patents in a landmark court case decided last month in California. As a result, Samsung is facing the possibility of being forced to pay Apple more than $1 billion in damages. So it’s not surprising that the company is looking for leverage wherever it can in its legal battle.

But what aspect of the iPhone 5 infringes on Samsung’s patents? The company already said it would sue Apple if it made an LTE-capable phone. But what else? No one outside of a few gadget reviewers, some developers and Apple employees have actually seen and used the device. That’s likely why Samsung says it is “planning to file” a suit. Expect to hear more about this after the device goes on sale to the public tomorrow.

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