Last year Apple was awarded a U.S. patent for the rounded corners on the iPad. This raised a lot of eyebrows at the time, but Apple was also still fighting Samsung in the courts over whether three Galaxy Tab models infringed on Apple designs. Today one of the cases, from The Netherlands, has been resolved; but not in Apple’s favor.
Following example’s from U.K. court decisions, a Dutch court ruled today that the Galaxy Tab 10.1, 8.9, and 7.7 don’t infringe on the iPad:
Wednesday’s ruling by a district court in The Hague concerned the rounded corners of Samsung’s Galaxy Tab 10.1, Galaxy Tab 8.9, and Galaxy Tab 7.7.
“We continue to believe that Apple was not the first to design a tablet with a rectangular shape and rounded corners and that the origins of Apple’s registered design features can be found in numerous examples,” Samsung said in a statement.
If you remember, the U.K. court ruled that the Galaxy Tab didn’t infringe because it wasn’t “as cool” as the iPad and later there was the whole apology debacle on the U.K. website.
It isn’t likely that Apple will release a statement about this decision, but if they do, we’ll update here.
Long term, what does this mean? Apple certainly has the cash to keep following through on all the court battles, but I suspect that these battles are all going to start winding down. I doubt we’ll see renewed suits and fights between Samsung and Apple this year. Both sides have made their points. And I don’t think there is a clear winner on either side.