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Galaxy Tab 7.7 banned in Europe in patent case

Galaxy Tab 7.7 imitates Apple design in an 'unacceptable manner,' a German court rules. But it allows sales of Samsung's Galaxy Tab 10.1N, which no longer infringes Apple patents or designs. 

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A man holds a Samsung Galaxy Tab 7.7 during press day at the IFA consumer electronics fair in Berlin last year. A German court has banned European sales of the tablet computer because it infringes Apple's design, Samsung's larger 10.1N tablet now can be sold, it rules.

Thomas Peter/Reuters/File

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A Duesseldorf court has issued a split decision in a patent dispute between rivals Apple andSamsung over two of the Korean company's tablet computers.

California-based Apple sued to have sales of both the Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1N and the Galaxy Tab 7.7 stopped.

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But the Duesseldorf state court ruled Tuesday that Samsung made enough changes to the Galaxy Tab 10.1 in its 10.1N that it no longer infringes upon any Apple iPad patents or designs.

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It said, however, that the back and sides of the smaller Galaxy Tab 7.7 imitated the Apple design in an "unacceptable manner" and ordered European sales stopped.

Samsung Electronics and Apple Inc. are engaged in a strategic war over patents in many countries andSamsung typically responds to such rulings with design tweaks.

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