Apple argues iPad case in Aussie tablet row

American computer giant Apple claims that Samsung Electronics' latest tablet computer infringes on patents relating to touch screen technology.

Lawyers for Apple addressed the Federal Court after the firm launched legal action against the South Korean company last month, accusing it of intellectual property infringements with the Galaxy Tab 10.1 tablet.

Apple is seeking a permanent ban on the sale or promotion of the latest Galaxy in Australia, where it would compete with its popular iPad.

Samsung disputes the claims but has agreed to delay the product's Australian launch pending a decision by the court.

Earlier this month, Samsung launched a counter-claim alleging Apple's iPhone and iPad 2 tablet violate wireless-technology patents held by Samsung.

Apple attorney Steven Burley told the court Samsung's product was similar in "form, factor and shape" to Apple's iPad 2, although the case centres on at least three patents that relate to touch screen technology.

"It must have been as plain as the (Sydney) Opera House to Samsung that the Apple patents were right in front of its eyes, and they were wide open," Burley said.

"They ought to clear the way in advance rather than try to crash through."

A ruling is expected this week.

The companies are already embroiled in a patent dispute over smartphones and tablet computers in the United States, with both sides filing infringement claims against the other.

Legal action is also ongoing in Germany and South Korea.

- AFP

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