Apple has filed a motion with the United States International Trade Commission to halt an import ban on several older models of the iPad and iPhone as reported by GigaOM. The ban is scheduled to go into effect on August 5, 60 days after a customary review period by the federal government.
Apple has filed an appeal against the ruling and is hoping the commission will stay the order until the Federal Circuit Court makes its decision.
The ban is a result of a victory won by Samsung in June after the ITC found that several versions of Apple’s products violated encoding patents, and it will extend to the iPhone 4, iPad 2 and all previous models.
Apple has argued that the ban will cause the company “irreparable harm” and “will sweep away an entire segment of Apple’s product offerings.”
If the Orders go into effect, Apple will lose not only sales of its iPhone 4 (GSM) and iPad 2 3G (GSM) products but also the opportunity to gain new smartphone and tablet customers who otherwise would have purchased these entry- level Apple devices.
Apple will suffer irreparable harm if the Orders go into immediate effect, whereas Samsung and any other interested parties will suffer little or no harm if the Orders are stayed. Finally, the public interest counsels strongly in favor of the requested stay.
It also argued on behalf of the carriers who provide the iPhone, stating that “the iPhone 4 was the fourth best selling smartphone in the United States in 2012.” Regarding T-Mobile and AT&T, which Apple redacted from the letter:
“The products subject to the Commission’s orders have been purchased by [REDACTED]. They remain very popular and are strong sellers for the GSM carriers. As noted above, the GSM carriers will be placed at a competitive disadvantage against their CDMA competitors because the Orders will prevent them from offering these popular, entry-level devices.”
Apple believes it has a “substantial case on the merits” and will most likely win the appeal, and the pointless ban will only serve to temporarily cripple the company in the long run.
The patent in question is titled Patent No, 7,706,384 titled “Apparatus and method for encoding/decoding transport format combination indicator in CDMA mobile communication system.” Apple had been trying to get the patent classified as a “standards essential,” meaning fair usage amongst competitors, but it did not succeed.
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