Before US, S Korean court rules against Apple and Samsung
As the world (and investors) waits for the US verdict on patent violations by the two computer and electronics giants, a South Korean court finds that both violated the law. The sentence imposes small fines and a ban on devices already no longer on sale.

Seoul (AsiaNews/Agencies) - A South Korean court has ruled that Apple and Samsung both infringed each other's patents on mobile devices. The decision, which includes small fines, comes as a jury in California is deliberating on a patent trial between the two firms in the United States where claims could top US$ 2 billion.

The South Korean court ruled that since both societies infringed on patents it would impose a ban on the sale of their devices. It ruled that US-based Apple had infringed two patents held by Samsung, whilst the South Korean firm had violated one of Apple's patents.

Equally, the court ruled that it is practically impossible for users to confuse the devices sold by the two companies and that the interface of Samsung devices does not violate Apple patents.

A sales ban will apply to Apple's iPhone3GS, iPhone4 and its tablets the iPad and ipad2. Samsung products affected by the ban include its smartphone models Galaxy SI and SII and its Galaxy Tab and the Galaxy Tab 10.1 tablet PCs.

The verdict does not financially harm either company-Apple has to pay Samsung US$ 35,000, whilst Samsung was told to pay Apple US$ 18,000-nor does it affect new products. In fact, the sale of some of the devices had already been discontinued.