Why oh why does big news always break when I’m already in bed? This is a big one, guys: Motorola has been granted an injunction in Germany against Apple, which, as far as we can tell right now, covers Apple’s entire portfolio of mobile products. Motorola can enforce this injunction, barring all of Apple’s mobile products from the German market. In addition, Apple has to pay Motorola damages from 2003 and onwards. Update: Apple has responded (see Engadget article linked to above): “This is a procedural issue, and has nothing to do with the merits of the case. It does not affect our ability to sell products or do business in Germany at this time.” At this time huh? Huh.
The story is still developing, and in this sleepy mental state it’s a bit hard to read a German legal document. Motorola did release a short statement, but it’s pretty barren and void of any useful information.
As media and mobility continue to converge, Motorola Mobility’s patented technologies are increasingly important for innovation within the wireless and communications industries, for which Motorola Mobility has developed an industry leading intellectual property portfolio. We will continue to assert ourselves in the protection of these assets, while also ensuring that our technologies are widely available to end-users. We hope that we are able to resolve this matter, so we can focus on creating great innovations that benefit the industry.
Blogger Florian Mueller states that Apple may have let this injunction come to pass on purpose, because any evidence Apple would bring onto the table against it late would not be admissible in court again – in other words, Apple is saving everything up for the appeal it is undoubtedly going to file. Mueller also notes that at least one of the two patents in this injunction was declared a FRAND patent in the US.
In any case, Motorola can use this injunction to block all of Apple’s mobile products from entering the German market, but that may not be a good idea considering the European Commission’s investigation into Samsung and Apple. I’m very, very curious how this one’s going to develop.