Apple snubs Samsung’s Australian peace-offering

Apple has rejected an undisclosed peace-offering from Samsung which would have finally seen the Galaxy Tab 10.1 hitting Australian shelves. Australia is one of the ten nations where the Apple vs. Samsung legal saga is playing out.

The hopes of any Australians eager to try out the Galaxy Tab were dashed when before a court, Apple’s lawyer, announced the deal’s rejection, characterising it as “no more than a tactic to maximise the chances of Samsung launching what we would contend is an infringing product”, the Wall Street Journal reported.

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This is the latest turn in a saga which began in August when Apple launched legal action against Samsung, claiming that the Galaxy Tab 10.1 infringed on Apple’s intellectual property.

Apple’s Australian suit resulted in a counter-suit from Samsung claiming that Apple infringed on seven of its patents.

As a temporary measure while the case was being settled, sales of the Galaxy Tab 10.1 were barred in Australia.

Samsung, however, recently offered an undisclosed peace-deal to Apple which would have ended the Australian leg of this worldwide war. The move seems to be an attempt on the part of Samsung to avoid missing out on the Christmas sales season.

After the rejection, Samsung’s attorney argued that barring his client introducing the Galaxy Tab 10.1 would mean the tablet was “commercially dead” in Australia. He went on to say that “Our product would be kept out of the market for the Christmas period and into next year… Therefore, that product would be dead”.

Justice Annabelle Bennett, however, did not give a firm date on when she would rule on the patent dispute. She said, “It’s going to take me a little time, but I will do it as quickly as possible given the urgency for both parties”.

Any ruling reached in the Australian case is expected to have ramifications for both parties in the many other Samsung Electronics Co. vs Apple Inc. cases being fought around the world.

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