Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) does not make snowplows, but it could be very thankful for them – or at least the market for them. Apple makes smartphones and tablets, and it has been waging a protracted intellectual-property war against Samsung over possible patent infringement in about two dozen Samsung devices, and Apple came out on top in a U.S.-based trial last summer that found Samsung had infringed and should pay damages to Apple.
But the other part of that case was for the company to seek a sales injunction against the infringing Samsung products in the U.S. a move which would decimate the Korean handset maker and take a big bite out of Google Inc (NASDAQ:GOOG), which runs the Android operating system that is in Samsung devices.
Well, it seems that Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) just might have an opening to get that injunction imposed permanently. And it’s all because of snowplows. Judge Lucy Koh, who presided over the Apple-Samsung case in U.S. court last summer, denied the motion by Apple to impose a permanent injunction against 26 Samsung devices that were found to be infringing Apple patents, and Apple has appealed that decision.
Well, the decision by the U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit in Washington has issued a three-judge panel decision on a snowplow case, and the facts and arguments of that case mirror what is going on with Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) and Samsung, which means that there is a reasonable chance that Apple just might get that injunction for which it has been fighting.
The three-judge panel ruled on the snowplow case, Douglas Dynamics v. Buyers Products, and Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) used many of the points of contention from that case and cited it several times to make its case to have the injunction ruling not only overturned, but to have the injunction placed permanently against all 26 infringing devices. Apple uses the Douglas Dynamics case in its argument, and one particular piece of the decision could arguably be used verbatim in the Apple-Samsung injunction decision. This is information according to Florian Mueller of FOSS Patents, who follows intellectual-property law.
What is the piece that Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) could use to win its case against Samsung?