Apple’s victory against Samsung in the Netherlands for alleged violation of one of its patents could be short-lived, amid claims that an Android update could easily see the case thrown out of court.
Yesterday, a Dutch court placed a temporary ban on the marketing of Samsung’s Galaxy S, S2 and Ace smartphones after it found that the software used by the handsets infringes on Cupertino’s patent for the method of scrolling through photos on the touchscreen.
However, as the violation only occurs in the Gallery application of the phones, which run on Android 2.x, this could be easily resolved with update to Android 3.x, rendering the ruling null and void by the time it’s meant to come to effect in mid-October.
"The injunction has been granted due to the method of scrolling in the Gallery. If that's replaced, there is no more reason to uphold the injunction," said Bas Berghuis van Woortman, one of the lawyers working for Samsung.
The court has already shot down Apple’s allegation that the handsets also copy the design of the iPhone, citing as evidence that previous phones that boast similar design aesthetics, such as the LG Prada.
A separate purported breach, which involves the swipe-to-unlock screen unlock mechanism that Apple claims has been copied from iOS, is also likely to be rejected based on a similar method used in 2005's Neonode N1m handset.
Down but not out
Samsung announced earlier today that the verdict in the Netherlands does not affect the sale of Galaxy products in the rest of EU.
The company said in a statement: "This ruling is not expected to affect sales in other European markets.
“We will continue our plans to introduce new products and technologies that meet and exceed consumer expectations. And we will defend our intellectual property rights through the ongoing legal proceedings around the world."