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Australia Handhelds Patents The Courts Apple

Australian Federal Court Ends Ban On Samsung Galaxy Tab Sales 129

Posted by Soulskill
from the apple-invented-the-kangaroo dept.
New submitter Dedokta writes "The Australian Federal Court has overturned the injunction placed on the Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 and ordered Apple to pay court costs. Apple has applied for an appeal with the Supreme Court, but Samsung is now free to sell the Galaxy Tab within Australia. Samsung is not off the hook yet, however; the full case to see if they have indeed infringed upon Apple patents is still to be heard early next year."
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Australian Federal Court Ends Ban On Samsung Galaxy Tab Sales

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  • by quarrel (194077) on Wednesday November 30, 2011 @01:23AM (#38211112)

    Apple have sought leave to appeal to the High Court of Australia, Australia's highest court. So it's like the Supreme Court in the US - there are no appeals beyond that, and they get to pick and choose what cases they take, so there is little certainty Apple will get anywhere appealing now.

    (The Supreme Court usage in the summary is misleading to Australians because Supreme Courts here are State-based courts.)

    This is a good ruling I think. You could readily buy the 10.1 here online (ebay etc) and have it shipped to you - cheaper than you'd pay a local retailer too. If there is merit to Apple's case they'll be able to get damages down the line for the patent infringement.

    --Q

  • by Billlagr (931034) on Wednesday November 30, 2011 @01:25AM (#38211122)
    Apple managed to get a stay in the lifting of the ban until 4pm Friday, to give them enough time to get an urgent High Court hearing, so the way isn't clear for Samsung just yet.
  • by drhodesmumby (2520918) on Wednesday November 30, 2011 @01:26AM (#38211132)
    Except for the inevitable: win. The patent system, and to a lesser extent intellectual property as a whole, is causing severe problems in several industries worldwide. Technology it seems is suffering more than any other, and it's obvious why; with emerging markets such as smartphones and tablets there's everything to play for. Ecosystems haven't had time to settle down or seize the consumer yet, hardware is rapidly advancing and the field in general is in a state of flux. If you can gain dominance now and maintain it for as long as it takes for the market to settle down then you'll effectively monopolise it for the long-term, just as Microsoft managed with Windows and IE. The stakes are considerably higher too. Mobiles are growing so much faster than either the desktop or notebook markets and mobiles are so much more deeply ingrained into the average consumer's everyday life that quite frankly the potential for growth, both in profit and mindshare, is huge. With all this, it's scarcely surprising that companies are playing dirty. I only hope that this is the beginning of a backlash against Apple; when one company is a clear winner, that makes the consumer as much into the loser as any competitor.
  • Re:Good.... (Score:5, Informative)

    by mjwx (966435) on Wednesday November 30, 2011 @01:37AM (#38211176)

    Also, I find it interesting that in Australia, their supreme court takes cases like this. That could just be me being american though :/

    The supreme court is the highest court in each state, but below the federal court (I.E. Supreme Court of Western Australia or Supreme Court of Victoria). But the submitter had it wrong, this case was heard in the Federal Court of Australia who normally deals with corporate issues, trade practices, Industrial Relations and the like.

    Apple have made an appeal to the High Court of Australia which is the highest court in Australia. The High Court has no mandate to automatically hear cases, so if the High Court feel's Apple is wasting their time any appeal will be denied.

    What's important about this victory is that the evidence was heard by 3 Justices, not just one as was the case with the first injunction hearing and it was found by the three Justices that the original injunction was in error. The case still stands, Apple is still suing Samsung over alleged patent infringement, this hearing was only over the injunction. But this gives us an indication that there is some sanity in the Australian court system.

  • by mjwx (966435) on Wednesday November 30, 2011 @01:46AM (#38211202)

    Apple managed to get a stay in the lifting of the ban until 4pm Friday, to give them enough time to get an urgent High Court hearing, so the way isn't clear for Samsung just yet.

    I highly doubt Apple will get a High Court hearing, let alone one tomorrow given the fact the actual alleged infringement case is ongoing in the Federal Court. This case was just over the injunction.

  • Re:Good.... (Score:5, Informative)

    by quarrel (194077) on Wednesday November 30, 2011 @02:18AM (#38211298)

    Just to be more of a pedant, Supreme Courts aren't really below the Federal Court. You can't appeal a decision of a Supreme Court to the Federal Court. They're different jurisdictions.

    --Q

  • Update and two cents (Score:3, Informative)

    by Wasusa (1633263) on Wednesday November 30, 2011 @02:18AM (#38211304)
    Quick update on this: http://www.news.com.au/technology/tablets/samsung-wins-australian-appeal-case-in-apple-tablet-war/story-fn6vigfp-1226210226842 [news.com.au] They can't actually start selling yet, and apple are trying to overturn the overturned decision. And why would you get a Galaxy tab, especially now that the Transformer is out and about
  • by quarrel (194077) on Wednesday November 30, 2011 @02:36AM (#38211374)

    No, there isn't.

    The Australia Acts (Federal and State) removed appeal to the Privy Council in the 80s for Australians.

    The High Court doesn't and can't grant an appeal to the Privy Council (and this predates even the Australia Acts).

    --Q

  • by davetv (897037) on Wednesday November 30, 2011 @03:07AM (#38211496)
    In Australia, this would require a separate court action. It might yet occur.
  • by HJED (1304957) on Wednesday November 30, 2011 @03:39AM (#38211610)

    Although the path of appeal from the High Court to the Privy Council had been effectively blocked, the High Court could not block appeals from State supreme courts directly to the Privy Council. Nor did the Constitution limit, or provide for legislation to limit, such appeals. The expense of any appeal to the Privy Council in London had been a deterrent: in any year, there had never been more than a handful. Nonetheless, by the 1980s the possibility of appeal from a State supreme court was seen as outdated.

    Constitution s 74 has not been amended, and the Constitution cannot be amended by legislation.[4] Nonetheless, s 11 of the Australia Act goes as far as legislatively possible, to make s 74 a dead letter.

    I read that section as saying that whilst it is not normal to do so, the state supreme courts have the power to send appeals to the privy council and have not ruled it out.

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