The global patent war between Apple and Samsung, the world’s top two smartphone and tablet makers, has turned political.
South Korea’s government has expressed concerns about the surprise decision by President Obama to overrule a sales ban of some Apple models.
That ban was imposed by a US trade panel. It applied to the import and sale of some older iPhones and iPads on the basis that they infringed one patent owned by the South Korean.
The White House reversal of that ruling at the weekend led to accusations of “protectionism” from the South Korean media.
As of April of this year, Apple has 39.2 percent of the smartphone sales in the US, Samsung handsets accounted for 22 percent. Worldwide Samsung has overtaken its US rival.
In a statement South Korea’s Ministry of Trade, Industry & Energy said: “We express concerns about the negative impact that such a decision would have on the protection of patent rights.”
The ministry has said it was closely watching the next trade ruling – due this Friday – on whether some Samsung devices violated Apple patents.
It said it hopes that would be made on “fair and reasonable grounds”.