Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) isn't due to go to trial against Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd. in a patent battle regarding the Galaxy Nexus smartphone until next March, but it tried to be proactive in its pursuit of imposing a sales ban against the device. But just breaking Thursday, the full Federal Circuit Court of Appeals in Washington shot down a request to hear the company's appeal of an earlier ruling in October by a three-judge panel of the court, which ruled unanimously against Cupertino previously.
In the initial order by the panel, the bar was raised significantly to impose a major sales ban due to possible or confirmed infringement of patents. But the full court of nine judges submitted a denial of the appeal request with no elaboration on the reasoning - which is to presume that a majority of the full panel would have affirmed the earlier decision. This means that Samsung's Galaxy Nexus smartphone will stay on the shelves in competition with Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) for at least the next year or more.
This case began in February, when Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) filed suit against Samsung for patent infringement by the Galaxy Nexus - which is separate from the Apple judgment victory over Samsung last summer. While filing suit over the Nexus, Apple requested a U.S. sales ban on the device, and Judge Lucy Koh granted the temporary injunction in June, but Samsung's appeal to a district court in California was rebuffed, extending the sales ban until a final verdict was reached in the case.
However, in October, the three-judge panel of the federal appeals court threw out the ban, saying that Judge Koh had an "abuse of discretion" in handling the ban, and the full appeals court is standing with the panel. There is no word as of yet whether Apple Inc. (NSDAQ:AAPL) will pursue another legal step.
Would you agree with this decision? What would Aple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) do next? Does this matter in the big picture? We'd like your thoughts in the comments section below.
DISCLOSURE: I own no positions in any stock mentioned.
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