Apple Patent Complaint Over Samsung Galaxy Products to Be Reviewed by ITC

Apple Inc. (AAPL)’s patent complaint that seeks to block imports of Samsung Electronics Co.’s Galaxy S mobile phone and Galaxy Tab computer will be reviewed by the U.S. International Trade Commission.

The ITC, a quasi-judicial agency in Washington that arbitrates trade disputes, said in a notice today it instituted the investigation. The commission, which typically takes 15 to 18 months to complete the review, has the power to block imports of products that infringe U.S. patents.

Apple and Samsung have each lodged patent-infringement cases against each other in the U.S., Europe, Asia and Australia. The ITC last week said it would investigate a complaint Suwon, South Korea-based Samsung filed to block imports of Cupertino, California-based Apple’s iPhone and iPad.

Apple, which has accused competitors of “widespread imitation,” has taken particular aim at Samsung, which had been a supplier of chips for some Apple devices. Apple contends that the Galaxy phone and tablet “slavishly” copy the iPhone and iPad.

The new case is In the Matter of Certain Electronic Digital Media Devices, 337-796, and Samsung’s case is In the Matter of Mobile Electronic Devices, including Wireless Communication Devices, Portable Music and Data Processing Devices, and Tablet Computer, 337-794, both U.S. International Trade Commission (Washington.)

To contact the reporter on this story: Susan Decker in Washington at sdecker1@bloomberg.net.

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Allan Holmes at aholmes25@bloomberg.net

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