Apple v Samsung in Australia

“As set out by the High Court in Australian Broadcasting Corporation v O’Neill [2006] HCA 46; (2006) 227 CLR 57, there are two main inquiries to undertake in determining whether to grant an interim injunction.

The first inquiry is whether Apple has made out a “prima facie case” in the sense that there is a probability that at a final hearing it will be entitled to relief. The requirement of a “prima facie case” does not require Apple to show that it is more probable than not that it will succeed at trial. Apple needs to show that it has a sufficient likelihood of success.

The second inquiry, often referred to as the “balance of convenience”, involves a consideration of whether the inconvenience or injury that Apple would be likely to suffer if an injunction were refused outweighs or is outweighed by the inconvenience or injury which Samsung will suffer if the injunction were granted.

The Court is required to determine whether to grant the interim injunction within this legal framework.”

Thus, the court ruled that Apple should be granted its injunction on the narrow balance of convenience in favour of Apple, not on the merits of Apple’s case.

” Apple has established a prima facie case for an entitlement to relief on the Heuristics Patent. Even though Samsung has established a prima facie case for the invalidity of the Touch Screen Patent, Apple has also established a prima facie case for an entitlement to relief on the Touch Screen Patent. The balance of convenience tilts in Apple’s favour. I am satisfied, within the test in O’Neill, that it is appropriate to restrain the launch of the Australian Galaxy Tab 10.1.”

Samsung stated in court that by the time of trial, the Galaxy 10.1 will likely be obsolete. This is a case of mutually assured destruction as Samsung will likely be able to thwart distribution of Apple’s iThingies in a similar manner. Is the world a better place if neither company can sell products globally? This is another demonstration on the invalidity of software patents which are supposedly to promote innovation.

see The Ruling

In the US, a judge has declined to issue one of Apple’s injunctions. The judge stated that while Samsung violates the patents, Apple has to prove those patents are valid.

About Robert Pogson

I am a retired teacher in Canada. I taught in the subject areas where I have worked for almost forty years: maths, physics, chemistry and computers. I love hunting, fishing, picking berries and mushrooms, too.
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