Motorola Mobility has just announced that it has scored a major victory in its ongoing patent war with Apple. Just as the iPhone-makers have done to Samsung, Motorola has just won an injunction that bans the import of 3G iPads and iPhones into Germany.
This will be the company’s second German court victory in as many months, but the ramifications for Apple are a lot more serious this time around. Unless Apple wins an appeal, it will be forced to stop shipping some of its biggest products into the country…
According to FOSSPatents, a Mannheim Regional Court just granted Motorola Mobility an injunction, banning the import of iPhones and 3G-capable iPads into Germany. The patent-in-suit is a European Patent regarding mobile-originated wireless packet transfers (data).
The court’s ruling today not only blocks iPhone and iPad shipments, but it also contains an order for Apple to pay a yet-to-be determined amount to Motorola in damages. That amount will be defined by the German-based sales of Apple’s infringing products from past years.
Here’s what Apple told AllThingsD about the ruling:
“We’re going to appeal the court’s ruling right away. Holiday shoppers in Germany should have no problem finding the iPad or iPhone they want.”
Even if Apple doesn’t win an appeal against the injunction, the ban only applies to the importing of products. The company will be able to continue to sell current inventory in Germany as usual, and word on the street is it’s got plenty of it.
But make no mistake about it, this was a huge win for Motorola that will likely help it in future patent lawsuits against Apple. Also keep in mind that Google put up over $12 billion dollars to buy the company for this very reason — patent leverage.