Germany’s Dusseldorf Regional Court has come to a decision concerning Apple’s complaint that the Motorola XOOM infringes upon design patents granted for their iPad. In a positive turn of events for Android manufacturers, the court has denied Apple’s claims, ruling that the XOOM does not copy elements of the iPad’s design, which covers such aesthetic aspects as the tablet’s bezel and shape. Sticking to such narrowly defined parameters gives other tablet makers a good bit of leeway, as was demonstrated when Samsung was able to skirt an outright ban in Germany on their Galaxy Tab 10.1 after some minor changes were implemented.
As opposed to Samsung’s ill luck with similar matters, Motorola has managed to come out on top in several legal spats with Apple. However, in this case the ruling wasn’t a total victory. Motorola was also pushing to have Apple’s European design rights rendered completely invalid, a request which a judge was not apt to grant. As such, both parties are being ordered to shoulder their share of legal expenses, with Apple paying a two-thirds majority.
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