UK Court: Apple Must Run Ads Saying Samsung Isn’t A Copycat

Apple is being forced to run ads in the UK in which the company proclaims that Samsung has not copycatted the company’s iPad designs for its own Samsung Galaxy Tab device line. Apple was appealing another court’s previous decision, but its appeal was denied by a High Court in London.

While the judge admitted that Samsung devices were not as “cool” as Apple’s because of there “extreme simplicit,y” he also found that the company was not copying Apple’s design.

The original court order demanded that Apple run the ads on its own website and in several major newspapers in the UK including the Daily Mail, Financial Times, T3 Magazine, and others.

The ads must be run to “correct the damaging impression” that Samsung was simply copying Apple’s work.

Apple argued that other courts, specifically in Germany, had decided that the Samsung line of devices confused potential Apple buyers because of its similar build structure.

According to the court:

“The acknowledgment must come from the horse’s mouth. Nothing short of that will be sure to do the job completely.”

Apple’s entire homepage will not become a giant billboard for Samsung; instead the company must place a viewable link that reads “Samsung/Apple judgement.” The Samsung appeal link must remain on the Apple website for a one-month period.

After the ruling, a Samsung representative said:

“We continue to believe that Apple was not the first to design a tablet with a rectangular shape and rounded corners and that the origins of Apple’s registered design features can be found in numerous examples of prior art.

“Should Apple continue to make excessive legal claims in other countries based on such generic designs, innovation in the industry could be harmed and consumer choice unduly limited.”

Samsung was recently ordered in the United States to pay Apple $1.1 billion for various patent infringements.

This most recent Court of Appeal review was overseen by three judges. One of the judges in the case, Sir Robin Jacob, an iPad owner, noted that Apple’s registered design specifically called for “no ornamentation” on the front of the device; however, Samsung clearly marks the front of its tablet line with the Samsung logo.

The court also noted that the iPad design features a “sharp edge,” which differentiates the product from the Galaxy Tab line of devices. Also the Samsung devices were found to be “busier” with a more apparent camera design and a broader use of colors.