(NEW YORK) — A federal administrative panel has issued an import ban on some Samsung devices on grounds they violate two of Apple’s patents. The U.S. International Trade Commission issued its ruling late Friday. The ITC cleared Samsung on four other patents in dispute. Samsung Electronics Co. and Apple Inc. are in a global legal battle over smartphones. Apple argues Samsung’s Android phones copy vital iPhone features. Samsung is fighting back with its own complaints. The legal disputes come as competition in the marketplace intensifies. Samsung has been cutting into Apple’s dominance in phones and is now the leading smartphone manufacturer. Samsung is also pushing into Apple’s territory with its own Android tablet computers. Although these cases typically involve older products that are no longer widely sold, a victory could affect what features are included in future devices and could slow down a rival’s momentum. Last year, a federal court in San Francisco ruled that Samsung owed Apple $1 billion in damages for infringing on non-essential Apple patents. But the judge refused to impose an import ban on Samsung phones and later struck $450 million from the verdict, saying the jurors miscalculated. An appeals court in Washington heard arguments in that case Friday, but has not issued a ruling. Separately, the ITC ruled in June against Apple in banning imports of the iPhone 4 and a variant of the iPad 2 after finding the devices violate one of Samsung’s patent. But last weekend, the Obama administrative invalidated the order, as it has the authority to do within 60 days of ITC rulings. President Barack Obama is against import bans based on the type of patent at issue in the June ruling. U.S. courts have ruled that such patents cannot be the basis for import bans. But the ITC, which is an administrative agency and not a court, follows a different standard than the courts. The Obama administration wants the ITC to adhere to the same principles and has recommended that Congress limit the ITC’s ability to impose import bans in these
The latest battle in the Apple v. Samsung patent war came to a close Friday, with a trade agency ruling Apple the victor.
T-Mobile will be discontinuing the “No Money Down” promotion that it launched in late July, reports AllThingsD. The promotion, which ends on Saturday, allowed new T-Mobile subscribers to purchase an iPhone with no downpayment, paying for the full cost of the phone with monthly payments of approximately $25.
While the iPhone 4 and other smartphones will still be available with no money down, the iPhone 4S and the iPhone 5 will revert to T-Mobile’s original pricing terms. For the iPhone 5, customers will need to pay $145.99 upfront and make 24 monthly payments of $21.
T-Mobile did not give a reason why the two iPhone models were removed from the promotion, but a representative gave AllThingsD the following statement: “As is the nature of promotions, pricing moves are temporary.”
Despite the return of the downpayment, T-Mobile’s pricing remains the most affordable for an iPhone 5 from the major carriers.
T-Mobile, which introduced its “Un-Carrier” policies aiming to separate device costs from service costs in March, has garnered 1.1 million new customers during the last few months. T-Mobile CEO John Legere said earlier this week that the company is planning on expanding its Apple product offerings beyond the iPhone.
Ladar Levison, 32, has spent ten years building encrypted email service Lavabit, attracting over 410,000 users. When NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden was revealed to be one of those users in July, Dallas-based Lavabit got a surge of new customers: $12,000 worth of paid subscribers, triple his usual monthly sign-up. On Thursday, though, Levison pulled the plug on his company, posting a cryptic message about a government investigation that would force him to “become complicit in crimes against the American people” were he to stay in business. Many people have speculated that the investigation concerned the government trying to get access to the email of Edward Snowden, who has been charged with espionage. There are legal restrictions which prevent Levison from being more specific about a protest of government methods that has forced him to shutter his company, an unprecedented move.