Samsung Electronics has begun legal proceedings against Apple over accusations of patent infringement concerning the iPad and iPhone devices.
The announcement comes just days before a new product launch for the South Korean hi-tech giant and just days after Apple began its own lawsuit against Samsung for “slavishly” copying its models.
Apple is annoyed by Samsung’s fast rise in a market that it virtually created, said an analyst from Korean firm Daewoo Securities. The analyst added that in light of how quickly Samsung has caught up, Apple might have been inclined to put a stop to it just when Samsung is about to launch a new smartphone in May ahead of its new iPhone.
iPad, iPhone Named in Infringement Accusation
Samsung said on Friday that Apple’s iPad and iPhone infringe on 10 Samsung mobile technology patents and that the company was “responding actively to the legal action taken against us in order to protect our intellectual property."
Samsung supplies Apple with chips and LCD displays for the iPhone and the iPad, and if not settled soon, the tit-for-tat suing could disrupt one of the biggest supply chains in today’s smartphone industry.
This new legal action is the latest in an intensely competitive market worth over $160 billion.
Samsung’s Galaxy Android-powered smartphones and tablet PCs have emerged as the biggest competitors to Apple’s iPhone and iPad, but the US-based firm remains the out and out leader.
Key Statistics - Smartphone Industry (source: Gartner)
- Smartphones made up nearly 300 million (19%) of the 1.6 billion mobile phones sold in 2010; ?or over 72% more sold than in 2009.
- Smartphone unit sales in the United States should grow to 95 million in 2011 up from 67 million in 2010, becoming the best-selling consumer electronic device segment.