Apple V Samsung: a lack of consistency


Michiel Rijsdijk

As in many other jurisdictions, Dutch courts have been a playing field for the patent battle between Samsung and Apple.

On May 31, 2013, the Supreme Court of the Netherlands delivered a verdict in an appeal about whether the Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 and the Tab 10.1v infringed Apple’s Community Design registration (CDR) no. 181607-0001. Importantly, the procedure at hand is not about comparing the iPad and the Galaxy Tab. The design registration filed by Apple is different from the iPad1 or iPad2—they are nearly twice as thin as the registered design and the length and width of the iPads are different from the registered shape.

In 2011, Apple brought interim injunction proceedings against Samsung, claiming Samsung infringed its CDR. The Hague District Court found that the Galaxy Tab 10.1 and Tab 10.1v did not infringe and did not grant a preliminary injunction against Samsung. Apple filed an appeal procedure.

The judgment was upheld on appeal. First, the court decided that the CDR was valid. Although all the design elements found in the registration could also be found in the prior art, the combination of these elements in one design was not yet known.

Apple, Samsung, Netherlands, patent, The Hague, Ipad, Court of Appeal