Saturday, December 10, 2011

Motorola Mobility wins injunction barring import of iPhones, 3G iPads into Germany

Motorola Mobility won a huge court victory in Germany on Friday, as the Mannheim Regional Court granted it a preliminary injunction banning the importation of iPhones and 3G iPads into the country.

However, German consumers who are iDevice-centric needn't worry about the supply of iPhones and iPads during the holiday shopping season. Apple reports there are plenty of devices already in country, and Apple will appeal as soon as possible. It will also seek a stay to prevent enforcement of the injunction while the appeal process goes on.

In addition, for the injunction to go into effect, Motorola Mobility would have to put up a €100 million ($134 million) bond. That bond would be used to reimburse Apple for costs if the injunction were to be overturned on appeal.

Now, if Motorola Mobility were already part of Google, that might not be such a big deal, but for now ...

Meanwhile, Motorola Mobility has issued a press release on the ruling, with Scott Offer, senior vice president and general counsel of Motorola Mobility saying:

“We are pleased with the court’s ruling. Today’s decision validates Motorola Mobility’s efforts to enforce its patents against Apple’s infringement. Motorola Mobility has worked hard over the years to build an industry-leading intellectual property portfolio that is respected by the telecommunications industry, and we are proud to leverage this portfolio to create differentiated innovations that enhance the user experience.

"We will continue to take all necessary steps to protect our intellectual property, as the Company’s patent portfolio and licensing agreements with companies both in the U.S. and around the world are critical to our business. We have been negotiating with Apple and offering them reasonable licensing terms and conditions since 2007, and will continue our efforts to resolve our global patent dispute as soon as practicable.”

Apple has responded is well, telling AllThingsD:

“We’re going to appeal the court’s ruling right away. Holiday shoppers in Germany should have no problem finding the iPad or iPhone they want.”

While it's true that shoppers may have no issues through the holidays, what about after that? Eventually, supplies will dwindle. This story is obviously far from over, as the legal battles between Apple and Android OEMs like Motorola Mobility and Samsung continue.

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