In a rather interesting turn to the ongoing patent lawsuit raging between tech giants, Apple and Samsung Electronics, the US International Trade Commission will reportedly go through an earlier ruling which found Apple not guilty of patent violation. A verdict can be expected to come around in January. 

This is in reference to a September ruling, wherein an administrative law judge at the ITC ruled that Apple did not violate Samsung’s patents in designing its iPhone, iPod touch, and the iPad. What’s key here is that if in the January verdict, Apple is found guilty of patent violation, then its devices may suffer a sales ban in the US, a crucial market for its products.


September decision to be reviewed

The decision in question, currently under review, was voiced by ITC Judge James Gildea, who found Apple not guilty of patent violation. The particular case was filed in mid-2011. Importantly, reports highlight that ITC sought for a brief on how it should take into consideration standard essential patents, expected to be licensed on fair, reasonable, and non-discriminatory (FRAND) terms. 

Those following our coverage of the Apple vs. Samsung lawsuit would know that the two companies have locked horns over a host of unresolved patents. The lawsuit, spanning several region globally, has witnessed many of their products come under the axe, i.e., a sales ban, creating a dent in their respective ambitions. Although Apple won after what had been one long battle and Samsung Electronics is to cough up compensation to the tune of a staggering $1.05 billion, the decision stands under appeal now. 

Only a couple of days ago, Samsung was granted a go-ahead by a US Magistrate Judge Paul Grewal in San Jose, California, to put forth its claims that the Apple iPhone 5 violates its patents. The US judge also allowed Apple to go ahead with its claims that the Samsung Galaxy Note, Galaxy S III, and the Google-owned Android Jelly Bean operating system violate its patents. This development is the latest in what has been a longstanding patent battle involving Cupertino-based Apple Inc and brands manufacturing Android-running devices, Samsung being one of them. As per reports, both companies refused to comment. 

Apart from Samsung, Apple Inc has been battling with HTC, Motorola, and other companies manufacturing Android-based smartphones, in a bid to limit the growth of the Google-owned platform. 

As per Gartner's figures recently, the Android OS has continued to increase its market share, up 19.9 percentage points in the third quarter of 2012. The report revealed further that despite RIM losing market share, it claimed the number three position as Symbian is nearing the end of its lifecycle. This report also found smartphones continued to play an important role in pushing the sales of mobile phones worldwide, with sales rising to 169.2 million units in the third quarter of 2012. Apple and Samsung continued their lead in this space.

Click here to know all about the Apple vs. Samsung lawsuit. 

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