Apple may seek a legal injunction to stop Samsung Electronics Co. from launching Galaxy S III smartphone in the United States later this month, according to reports.
The maker of iconic devices iPhone and iPad could file for a temporary restraining order against Samsung as early as Friday, Apple lawyer Josh Krevitt was quoted as saying at a hearing on Thursday in a San Jose, California federal court.
Apple sued Samsung for patent infringement last year, accusing the South Korean electronics maker of copying the iPhone and iPad. Samsung denied the claims and launched its own countersuit against the US rival.
Apple on Tuesday sought to restrain Samsung from introducing the new Galaxy S III, along with the Galaxy Nexus in the US market, the company said in court filing.
Samsung, however, argues that Apple should not be allowed to seek such a fast injunction against the Galaxy S III.
US District Judge Lucy Koh said she would not address arguments about the Galaxy S III phone, and would instead focus on the Galaxy Nexus. Koh said Apple could file for a temporary restraining order on the Galaxy S III, but said it was unclear whether the request could be acted upon before the launch.
Samsung has already booked over 9mn preorders of the Galaxy S III, which is set to be sold by carriers in the US on June 21.
Separately, Choi Gee-sung, stepped down as CEO of Samsung Electronics and will be succeeded by Kwon Oh-hyun, the head of the company’s component businesses.
Gee-sung, 61, will assume the new role of head of corporate strategy at Samsung Group, which presides over some 81 companies including its flagship, Samsung Electronics.
Samsung said there would be no operational impact from the reshuffle, with Kwon still overseeing the components business.