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Samsung: Apple trying to limit consumer choice

By Youkyung Lee
AP Technology Writer


SEOUL, South Korea » Samsung on Saturday accused Apple of resorting to litigation in an effort to limit consumer choice after the iPhone maker said it was seeking to stop the sale of Galaxy S III smartphones in the United States.

Fresh from its $1 billion court victory over Samsung Electronics Co, Apple Inc., in a separate case, asked a federal district court in San Jose, California, on Friday to add four more products to a list of Samsung goods that Apple says infringe its patents.

The new list of 21 products includes Samsung's flagship smartphone Galaxy S III as well as the Galaxy Note, another popular Android phone. If the court finds those devices are infringing Apple's patents and irreparably harming the U.S. company, it could temporarily halt sales in the U.S. market even before the trial begins.

The latest accusation is part of a larger, epic struggle over patents and innovation in one of the most lucrative consumer electronics sectors that is unfolding in 10 countries.

The biggest stakes are in the U.S., the world's largest smartphone market in 2011. Last month, a jury in the San Jose court found that Samsung had copied Apple's design innovations and Samsung was ordered to pay Apple $1.05 billion. Samsung has vowed to appeal the verdict, all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court if necessary.

On Saturday, Samsung denounced Apple's attempt to halt sales of the S III, which hit the 10 million global sales mark in July, less than three months after its release.

"Apple continues to resort to litigation over market competition in an effort to limit consumer choice," Samsung said in a statement. "We will continue to take the necessary legal measures to ensure the availability of our innovative products in the United States."

The strong sales of the S III were crucial in driving Samsung's quarterly profit to a record high in the last quarter and helped it stay ahead in the worldwide smartphone market.

In documents filed with San Jose federal district court on Friday, Apple said 21 Samsung smartphones, media players and tablets released after August 2011 were "copycat products."

"Rather than innovate and develop its own technology and a unique Samsung style for its smartphone and tablet computer products, Samsung has chosen to copy Apple's technology, user interface, and innovative style," Apple said in one document.

The Cupertino, California-based company claimed that Samsung is illegally using its eight patents. One patent is related to the way the device retrieves information in a computer system and another is about gestures on a touchscreen display to unlock a device.

Apple and Samsung are the world's two largest smartphone makers and together they control over half of the global market. They are embroiled in similar legal tussles in Asia, Europe and the United States.

In April 2011, Apple first accused Samsung of illegally copying Apple's design and technology in the smartphones powered by Google Inc.'s Android technology. Samsung countersued, arguing Apple's iPhone and iPad used its wireless technology without permission.

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onevoice82 wrote:
Every one in the US should be on Apple's side on this issue. Buy an american phone!!!!
on September 1,2012 | 07:42AM
shcole wrote:
an american phone...manufactured in China....that may be the most misinformed comment in the history of the internet.
on September 1,2012 | 07:47AM
localguy wrote:
Some local people never leave the island, never learn how the real world works. Sad.
on September 1,2012 | 11:10AM
sak wrote:
To Samsung, "Would you like some Cheese with your Whine"? It's about time someone sets things right. Knock-offs or counterfeit products have been on the market for decades. Be it a fake Rolex, a CD or Gucci Handbag, it doesn't have to look exactly like it's supposed counterpart to be a knock-off. The Asians in particular wU-Sahere or are the masters of making these Knock-offs, so of course in Japan and South Korea the Asian Courts see this as normal operating procedure. I once heard a story long time ago where a City in China was actually named "USA"(pronounced U-Sah), where they manufactured products. So if one were to look on the back of their products, one would think they were made in the U S of A.
on September 1,2012 | 10:21AM
localguy wrote:
interesting how in the USA with a stacked jury, Samsung is found guilty. Yet in Asian and European countries Apple is having major problems trying to win. Apple suffers from paranoia / conspiracy theory how everyone is trying to gang up on them. Apple can't stand other companies come out with similar or better technology at lower cost. I will never own an iPhone as it is to tightly locked by Apple. Can't change the battery, can't insert a micro SD chip, on and on. Sorry Apple, you lose.
on September 1,2012 | 11:09AM
Highinthesierras wrote:
Since Hawaii never leads in any business effort, it may be hard to imagine why Apple is paranoid - but sometimes they really are after you when you lead. Hawaii is in fact a leader in theft, so you can see why Samsung has defenders here.
on September 1,2012 | 11:38AM
nomakeshame wrote:
Rather than taking snide swipes at the state as a whole, please explain why you think Hawaii is a leader in theft. And why you are at it, where are you from or currently living, just so I know how to properly respond to you.
on September 1,2012 | 12:10PM
entrkn wrote:
just defending themselves and all of us from cheap imitation...
on September 1,2012 | 09:26PM
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