Can Apple Still Get Samsung Banned?

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Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) will have to wait for months to hear the result of its patent complaint against Samsung (SSNLF.PK) with the U.S. International Trade Commission after the agency decided to postpone the final ruling. According to Foss Patents, on Tuesday ITC Administrative Law Judge Thomas B. Pender scheduled a target decision date in the case for August 1, 2013. Pender will still have to make an initial determination in the case on or before April 1.

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In October last year, Pender had found Samsung guilty of having infringed upon three of Apple’s utility patents and one design patent with several of its mobile devices. While the judge had then recommended that the ITC initiate a U.S. import ban on the violating Samsung products, the agency last month asked Pender to reconsider two of the asserted patents.

Even if Pender were to eventually rule in Apple’s favor, import bans were not a certainty anymore because Samsung had already designed workarounds for several of the alleged violations, Foss Patents wrote. The patents in question relate to the multitouch system, providing translucent images on a display, headphone plug detection circuitry, and the design of the original iPhone.

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Apple first filed the case in July 2011 as one of several the two rivals are pursuing against each other in courts around the world. The Korean company also has an active complaint against Apple with the ITC after alleging patent violations of its own.

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