The International Trade Commission has made an initial ruling that Apple does not infringe on any of four Samsung patents. Administrative Law Judge James Gildea issued his determination on Friday that Apple was not liable for any Section 337 violations due to infringement. He further ruled that there is no relevant domestic industry that practices the patented claims—a requirement for the ITC to consider an import ban.
In the ongoing patent dispute between the two smartphone giants, Samsung accused Apple of infringing on two patents that appear to be related to 3G wireless standards, and two that relate to smartphone interfaces. For the ITC to bring sanctions against Apple, it would have determine that Samsung’s patents were valid, that a domestic US market exists where the patented claims are practiced, and that Apple infringed the patented claims.
ALJ Gildea did not comment on the validity of the four patents; the finding of no violation of Section 337 hinges largely on a finding of non-infringement. Even if Apple were found to infringe, however, Gildea ruled that no relevant “domestic industry” exists.