Samsung loses German appeal, European regulators investigating it for patent abuse

Samsung's patent dispute with Apple in Europe have become a full blown headache as the Korean electronics giant lost its appeal against the German ban of its Galaxy Tab and is now being investigated by European Union regulators over alleged patent abuse.

Samsung's patent dispute with Apple in Europe have become a full blown headache as the Korean electronics giant lost its appeal against the German ban of its Galaxy Tab and is now being investigated by European Union regulators over alleged patent abuse.

 
The company will not be able to sell an older version of its 10.1-inch tablet computer in Germany, upholding an earlier ruling. However, it will still be allowed to sell its altered Galaxy Tab, which Apple failed to secure an injunction against.
 
More worryingly for Samsung, the European Commission is probing the company's patent deals over allegations that it is trying to “distort competition” in Europe.
 
The investigation focuses on whether or not Samsung has failed to license its technology to other industry players on a “fair, reasonable and non-discriminatory” basis, an agreement Samsung made with the European Telecommunications Standards Institute in 1998.
 
 Samsung loses German appeal, European regulators investigating it for patent abuse
 
The impetus for this criticism is Samsung's multiple lawsuits in European countries calling for a sales ban against certain Apple products, such as the iPhone 4S. The European Commission appears to be viewing Samsung's lawsuits as a vindictive move to quash competition, rather than what many analysts see as a response to Apple's extensive legal manoeuvrings throughout Europe and the rest of the world.
 
Despite the bitter battle with Apple, it was not the Cupertino, California-based firm that lodged the complaints, but rather a move made independently by regulators. Of course, Apple does not need to do anything if European officials are going to hunt down Samsung anyway. We wonder if they plan to do the same for Apple, and somehow we doubt it.
 
Sources: BBC and Reuters