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Computer Accessories

Apple suing Samsung over case designs. Yes, case designs

The latest lawsuit to come from Cupertino concerns Samsung's case designs, which Apple thinks are too similar to the iPad's.

And you thought these lawsuits couldn't get any more ridiculous. After accusing Samsung of "slavishly copying" the iPhone and iPad, Apple is now going after Samsung's accessories.

It's sent a notice of infringement to Samsung in Australia about the company's covers for its smart phones and tablets. Oh, and it'll be pursuing legal action. Merry Christmas!

Apple's lawyer Stephen Burley said this at a hearing in Sydney, Bloomberg reports. Samsung's lawyer Katrina Howard confirmed at the same hearing the company was served with the notice, accusing it of infringing at least 10 patents. We like to imagine she was giving Burley the evils too.

Neither lawyer revealed exactly which case Apple is up in arms about, but Samsung did find itself in a bit of controversy earlier this year. Accessory company Anymode announced a Smart Case for the Galaxy Tab 10.1 that closely resembled the Smart Cover for the iPad 2. Samsung had apparently approved the case, but then announced it had nothing to do with it, and the product was pulled before going on sale.

Apple accused Samsung of being a copycat back in April, succeeding in banning sales of its products in some countries. Samsung redesigned some of its products, but then just a couple of weeks ago a judge overruled the bans, allowing Samsung's Galaxy smart phones and tablets to be sold.

Despite all this, the two are still working together on the next iPhone. Given the vast scale of their manufacturing contracts, these lawsuits -- which have had negligible effect on consumers -- seem deeply petty. Just what is Apple playing at here?

Is this taking patent infringements too far? Or is Apple quite right to protect its designs? Let us know in the comments below, or on our Facebook page.