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ITC bans imports of some Samsung devices pending presidential review (update: Samsung statement)

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Despite that billion dollar verdict, the legal battle between Samsung and Apple continues, and the most recent happening comes from the ITC. Following up on an ITC administrative law judge's ruling late last year finding that Samsung had infringed a few of Apple's patented designs and tech, the Commission made its final determination today and issued a limited exclusion order for some Samsung devices. In its decision, the Commission found no violations of any of Apple's design patents, and only found that Samsung infringed a pair of patents -- patent number 7,479,949 for touchscreen technology, and patent number 7,912,501 for audio jack I/O circuitry. In doing so, the Commission stated that devices with workarounds to the asserted patents that were found not to infringe by the ALJ are not subject to the exclusion order.

As a result, offending Samsung devices are scheduled to be banned from importation after a 60-day presidential review period. During those two months, the devices can still be sold, but unless Obama steps up for Samsung in the same way he did for Apple in a separate ITC case, we won't be seeing them stateside again. While we don't have an exact list of the affected devices, we do know that the devices at issue are older models like the Continuum, the Transform and the Galaxy S II. So, consumers won't feel much of an impact from the ban, but we bet Apple's legal team will have a much more enjoyable weekend as a result of this latest win.

Update: Samsung has issued a statement on the matter, which can be found after the break.

We are disappointed that the ITC has issued an exclusion order based on two of Apple's patents. However, Apple has been prevented from trying to use its overbroad design patents to achieve a monopoly on rectangles and rounded corners. The proper focus for the smartphone industry is not a global war in the courts, but fair competition in the marketplace. Samsung will continue to launch many innovative products and we have already taken measures to ensure that our products will continue to be available in the United States.

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