Apple should show how Samsung tablet hurts sales, judge says

A judge in Australia says Apple should prove its sales were hurt by the Galaxy Tab 10.1 if it wants to win an injunction against the device, according to Bloomberg.

Is the Galaxy Tab 10.1 hurting iPad sales?
Is the Galaxy Tab 10.1 hurting iPad sales? Samsung

Apple is being pressured to reveal iPad sales for the U.S. or U.K. in order to prove its tablet business has been nicked by Samsung's Galaxy Tab 10.1, according to Bloomberg.

Annabelle Bennett, a judge in Australia's federal court, said today that Apple isn't presenting enough evidence to justify an injunction against Samsung's tablet in her country. To prove that the iPad maker's tablet sales have been hurt by Samsung's device, Apple would need to offer sales data to make its case, Bloomberg reported.

Apple has launched bitter patent-infringement disputes on several continents against Samsung's Galaxy Tab 10.1. Apple claims Samsung's device illegally copies the iPad and should not be offered for sale. In Australia, Samsung last month reportedly agreed to let Apple see three versions of its Galaxy Tab 10.1 and eventually sell the model that Apple approves. If that deal was, in fact, struck, it doesn't appear to matter any longer because Apple is now seeking an injunction against Samsung's device.

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A key point in Apple's argument is that Samsung's allegedly infringing device is hurting iPad sales--a claim that Samsung has flatly denied. Samsung had requested that the Australian court force Apple to reveal sales information in the U.S. and U.K. to prove its point. The judge today declined to force Apple to do so, but said that Apple should voluntarily do so if it wants its injunction request considered.

The impact that the Galaxy Tab 10.1, which comes with a 10.1-inch display and runs Android, actually has on iPad sales might be difficult for Apple to show, given the iPad's stellar sales figures over the last several quarters. During the company's fiscal third quarter ended June 25, for example, Apple said it had sold 9.25 million iPads . That figure was up 183 percent compared with the same period in 2010.

Even with that strong performance, Apple alleges, according to Bloomberg, that iPad sales could be stronger if not for the "remarkable similarity of the Samsung product."

The latest development in Apple's bitter battle against Samsung comes just a couple weeks after the companies locked horns in Europe over whether the Galaxy Tab 10.1 should be banned for sale across the European Union. The European court that heard arguments on August 25 is expected to make a decision sometime this month.

The legal wrangling has also spilled over into the U.S. Late last month, Samsung rebuffed Apple's claims that its tablet is a copycat and cited Stanley Kubrick's 1968 film "2001: A Space Odyssey" as prior art to help bolster its argument against the iPad maker.

 

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