Well in a move that is kinda surprising, and going to make all the hardcore Android fans sad, Samsung has officially sought to end all of their requests to ban Apple products in Europe. At least according to a Samsung official. I know most hardcore Android fans (myself included) wanted to see all of Apple’s products banned in Europe. It appears this decision comes from continued probing by the EU’s anti-trust body, in regards to allegations that Samsung is abusing its standards-essential patents by seeking bans of Apple’s products for the infringement of these patents. But this does not mean they are dropping their lawsuits against Apple in Europe, just the injunction bans involved with these lawsuits. So like we said last night, this lawsuit between Apple and Samsung is very far from being over.
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These standards-essential patents have played the biggest role in these lawsuits between the two largest smartphone manufacturers in the world. Standards-essential patents (SEP) are patents on technologies such as the underpinnings of 3G connectivity, and they are used across broad parts of an industry. And since they are standard technologies, they are required to be licensed on a reasonable basis. Thus making it so these manufacturers can’t sue each other over these SEP’s.
Both Samsung and Apple have scored victories in lawsuits against each other across the four continents where they are suing each other. Of course all of you know that Apple accused Samsung of “slavishly copying” their devices. Which is appearing to not be true. I’ll leave that up to the jury to decide.
I know we are all tired of these patent wars between all these manufacturers, and that Apple started it all, but just because Apple did it doesn’t mean Samsung should do it. Standards-essential patents should not be the reason to ban Apple’s devices in Europe. Hopefully between yesterday’s decision and Samsung’s decisions today, this will move the two manufacturers to make a settlement, similar to what HTC did last month. That would make all of us very happy.