Judge Grants Apple Injunction to Bans Sales of Samsung Galaxy Tabs in U.S., Patent Wars Escalate

The ongoing patent wars are a bit ridiculous and somewhat tedious, even though one of the highest-profile tech patent cases is between giants Apple and Samsung and the stakes are high. Late Tuesday, however, things got interesting.

U.S. District Judge Lucy Koh (pictured), acting on a federal appeals court’s instructions to revisit her initial decision, has granted Apple’s request to ban sales of Samsung’s Galaxy Tab and Galaxy smartphones because they too closely resemble the iPad and iPhone. As soon as Apple submits a $2.6 million bond (required to cover damages in the event that Apple eventually loses the case), Samsung’s mobile sales will come screeching to a halt.

Banned in the U.S.

What’s even more notable is that Judge Koh granted the ban as a preliminary injunction--the case hasn’t actually been decided yet. Of course, Samsung will appeal the decision, but that will take time. Meanwhile, Samsung’s numerous Galaxy devices, which we’ve found definitely pass muster regarding their legitimacy in the mobile market, are in danger of becoming collector’s items.

Samsung has nothing close to Apple’s mobile market share, but it’s climbed to number two on the strength of the Galaxy devices. With the market getting crowded on various fronts by the likes of Amazon, Microsoft, and Google, Samsung already had serious competition, but now, the company could see its share dip precipitously or vanish altogether should the ruling be upheld.