Apple Wins Samsung Patent Case In US
Apple has won the latest victory in a long and bitter global battle with Samsung over alleged patent infringement.
The US International Trade Commission (ITC) found Samsung was in violation of two patents and banned American imports of some of its devices.
However, the ban is currently on hold because US President Barack Obama has 60 days to review the decision and could veto it.
Just days ago, the Obama administration overturned an ITC ruling from June that would have banned the sales of some older iPhones and iPads in the US for violating Samsung patents.
Letting the ban on Samsung devices stand after having so recently intervened in the Apple case could spur allegations of favouritism towards the Californian company.
The South Korean firm was cleared of infringing four other patents involved in the dispute, which has deepened as competition between the two firms intensifies.
Apple claims Samsung's Android phones copy vital iPhone features but the rival has fought back with its own complaints.
It has recently cut into Apple's market share and is now the leading smartphone manufacturer, as well as having growing success with its Android tablet computers.
The legal cases typically involve older products that are no longer widely sold but a victory could affect future features and therefore slow down a rival's momentum.
Apple could also seek to ban imports of phones released since the case was filed in 2011.
Samsung spokesman Adam Yates said the company was disappointed but vowed it would continue to release new products.
He added that measures had been taken to ensure they would continue to be available in the US.
Apple said in a statement that the ITC "has joined courts around the world in Japan, Korea, Germany, Netherlands and California by standing up for innovation and rejecting Samsung's blatant copying of Apple's products."
It continued: "Protecting real innovation is what the patent system should be about."
The patents supported by the ITC ruling included the so-called "Steve Jobs patent" which relates to the use of touchscreens, and one covering the audio socket.