A SOUTH KOREAN court has ruled that Apple and Samsung both infringed on each other’s patents, and ordered a partial ban of their products in South Korea.
The court also denied accusations that Samsung copied the look and feel of the iPhone and iPad.
The Seoul Central District Court ordered Apple to remove the iPhone 3GS, iPhone 4, iPad 1 and iPad 2 from store shelves in South Korea, ruling that the products infringed on two of Samsung’s five disputed patents, including those for telecommunications techology.
The court also denied Apple’s claim that Samsung had illegally copied its design, and that the shape and big display screen existed in products before the iPhone and iPad.
“Based on the similarity in these features, it is not possible to assert that the two designs are similar,” the court said in a ruling issued in Korean that was translated by the AP into English.
But in a twist, the court also ruled that Suwon, South Korea-based Samsung had infringed on one of Apple’s patents related to the screen’s bounce-back feature, which causes the screen to bounce back when a user scrolls to an end image.
The court banned sales of products using the technology, including the Galaxy S2, in South Korea.
Sales of devices recently released by Samsung and Apple — including the iPhone 4S and the Galaxy S3 smartphones — were not affected.
Court spokesman Kim Mun-sung said the court’s ruling was to take effect immediately, although companies often request that sanctions be suspended while they evaluate their legal options.
Nam Ki-young, a spokesman for Samsung, said the company has not decided what its next legal step might be. Apple did not respond to requests for comment.
The court also ordered each company to pay monetary compensation to its competitor. Samsung must pay Apple 25 million won ($22,000) while Apple must pay its rival 40 million won.
Legal experts not directly involved in the case said the ruling was favorable to Samsung since the company had won rare recognition from a court — that Apple infringed its wireless patents, which had been denied by courts in Europe.
Apple is suing Samsung for $2.5 billion and demanding that the court pull its most popular smartphones and computer tablets from the US market, making the case one of the biggest technology disputes in history.