One of Apple’s complaints against Samsung was that it copied a lot of the iPad’s design for its own Galaxy Tab line of tablets. The fight over whether Samsung did copy Apple has been going on for a very long time; today however, that’s over, as a UK judge has ruled that Samsung’s designs are not copies of Apple’s.
Since Apple lost, the company will have to publish a notice on its website telling visitors that Samsung did not copy the iPad’s design – and will have to leave that notice up for six months after it’s published. On top of that, Apple will have to pay for space in a number of UK publications so that the notice can also be read by their readers; this way, people who may not have ever visited Apple’s website will still find out about Samsung’s innocence.
The worst part – at least for Apple – of this loss is that the Cupertino-based company will have to publish an advertisement for Samsung. According to Richard Hacon, a lawyer for Apple, the ad will have to be “prejudicial” to the company, meaning that whatever ad Apple comes up with will have to be one that paints the iPad and Apple itself in a bad light.
Apple is still allowed to make public statements regarding its belief that Samsung did indeed copy its design – “They are entitled to their opinion,” said Judge Colin Birss – but after this ruling, I have a feeling that Apple will keep quiet about Samsung’s tablets. Hopefully, this ruling will get through to Apple in a way that will make the company and its lawyers think twice about pursuing other ongoing lawsuits.