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Android phones to be delayed to avoid legal action, analyst forecasts

Android phones to be delayed to avoid legal action, analyst forecasts

Android phone manufacturers could postpone the release of forthcoming handsets in the wake of Samsung’s recent courtroom reverse, giving Apple a serious competitive advantage when the iPhone 5 arrives.

Earlier this week, a US court ordered Samsung to pay £664 million after it decided that the South Korean phone-maker’s Galaxy smartphones infringed on patents held by Apple.

Android Jelly Bean sculpture at Googleplex

Mindful of the financial penalty Samsung incurred, Morgan Stanley analyst Katy Huberty forecasts that other Android manufacturers will likely delay their phones to ensure they avoid infringing Apple’s patents.

This would leave the market wide open for the iPhone 5, with fewer serious rivals in the crucial six month period after it drops.

A note from Huberty to investors states: "Apple's legal win against Samsung increases our confidence in iPhone 5 share gains over the next year, as many smartphone makers may need to re-consider software and design features in current or upcoming smartphones.

"In our view, the bigger win for Apple is the competitive ramifications if other smartphone vendors experience lengthened product cycles and are forced to alter their software and hardware to ensure unique designs relative to Apple products.”

News of analysts’ reactions to this week’s landmark verdict comes as it has emerged that Apple will now seek a US sales ban for eight Galaxy-branded phones.

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