According to the Wall Street Journal, the U.S. International Trade Commission ordered a ban on the import and sale of some mobile devices after finding they infringed on two Apple patents. Report Udate Aug 10 - 10:50 AM PST
As part of its findings, the ITC overturned an administrative judge's earlier finding that Samsung infringed a potentially important Apple patent on phone design.
The ITC said Samsung can continue to import and sell its infringing devices during a two-month period in which the Obama administration can review Friday's order. The ITC order is the latest setback to Samsung in its global patent battles with Apple.
The ruling applies to two patents. The first is the so-called "Steve Jobs patent", named after the company's founder and involves touch screen technology. The other patent is related to the audio socket on devices.
"It's another significant victory for Apple," property analyst Florian Mueller told the BBC.
On Sunday the Obama administration overturned a ban on Apple products. In that report we noted the Korean Government's reaction to Saturday's ruling. "The move was vehemently criticized by the South Korean media as "protectionism." The Ministry of Trade, Industry & Energy, said in a statement that they "express concerns about the negative impact that such a decision would have on the protection of patent rights." The ministry called on the U.S. trade body and the Obama administration to make "fair and reasonable decisions" as Samsung faces a decision on Friday as to whether some of its phones and tablets infringed on Apple's patents and should be banned from imports into the United States."
To be expected, the news of today's ruling is likely to further infuriate the Korean press. Whether the Obama administration will intercede in this case as they did with Apple is unknown at this time.
Update August 10, 2013: Korea Times Quotes from a Samsung statement: "We are disappointed that the USITC has issued an exclusion order based on two of Apple's patents. However, Apple has been stopped from trying to use its overbroad design patents to achieve a monopoly on rectangles and rounded corners." Read more from the Korea Times here.