Apple Pulls All 3G Devices Except iPhone 4S from German Online Store Following Motorola Patent Win [Updated]

Bloomberg reports that Apple has removed all non-iPhone 4S devices with 3G technology from its German online store following a win by Motorola in the ongoing patent dispute between the two companies. The devices, which include the 3G iPad 2, iPhone 4, and iPhone 3GS, remain available from Apple's physical stores and other resellers in the country.

iphone 4 3gs unavailable germany
iPhone 4 and iPhone 3GS removed from Apple's German online store

The removal is related to enforcement of a December injunction focused on a Motorola patent on 3G GPRS technology.

“While some iPad and iPhone models are not available through Apple’s online store in Germany right now, customers should have no problem finding them at one of our retail stores or an authorized reseller,” [Apple spokesman Alan] Hely said.

Beyond the 3G issue, Motorola has also won an injunction against Apple related to its iCloud services. Motorola has yet to seek enforcement of that ban, but could do so if it elected to post a $132 million bond to help cover penalties if it ultimately loses the case on appeal.

ipad 2 3g unavailable germany
iPad 2 Wi-Fi + 3G models removed from Apple's German online store

Apple is appealing both decisions, but has apparently agreed to remove the numerous 3G devices from its German online store while the process remains ongoing.

Update: SlashGear reports that Apple has issued a statement claiming that the 3G GPRS injunction has already been suspended and that the affected iPhone and iPad devices will return to the German online store "shortly".

Apple has been granted a suspension of the German injunction against 3G-enabled iOS devices, with the iPad WiFi + 3G, iPhone 4 and other gadgets back on sale through the company’s online store. ”All iPad and iPhone models will be back on sale through Apple’s online store in Germany shortly” the company told us in a statement. “Apple appealed this ruling because Motorola repeatedly refuses to license this patent to Apple on reasonable terms, despite having declared it an industry standard patent seven years ago.”

Update 2: The affected devices are now available again in the German online store.

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Top Rated Comments

djrod Avatar
161 months ago
patentpalooza!

Score: 40 Votes (Like | Disagree)
samcraig Avatar
161 months ago
“While some iPad and iPhone models are not available through Apple’s online store in Germany right now, customers should have no problem finding them at one of our retail stores or an authorized reseller,” [Apple spokesman Alan] Hely said.

So essentially nothing has changed.

Not entirely accurate. But keep on spinning the spin, LTD.
Score: 16 Votes (Like | Disagree)
rmwebs Avatar
161 months ago
Given the ridiculous amount of demand for Apple gear, those that want any of these devices can, and will get them. It's an issue of convenience in this case.

Seriously, who are you trying to convince here? I've said it before and I'm sure I'll say it a thousand more times. You've got zero credibility and are seen by most members here as a complete troll.

Face the facts. Having to pull 2/3 iPhone models from your primary retail outlet is not good news.

Since most people dont live anywhere near an Apple store, they rely on the online site, or 3rd party retailers. Loosing one of those two primary locations is a massive issue, not some sort of mild inconvenience.
Score: 13 Votes (Like | Disagree)
reefoid Avatar
161 months ago
“While some iPad and iPhone models are not available through Apple’s online store in Germany right now, customers should have no problem finding them at one of our retail stores or an authorized reseller,” [Apple spokesman Alan] Hely said.

So essentially nothing has changed.

Similar to the Samsung injunction last year, it only affected Samsung Germany so Samsung used their Dutch subsidiary to fill the market.

Last year you were claiming that was a major win for Apple (which of course it never was), yet according to you now its 'business as usual' as its Apple on the receiving end.

Your rabid Apple short-sightedness knows no bounds.
Score: 13 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Wordsmithmac Avatar
161 months ago
why is it ok when apple sues for a shape or something silly and demands rival products be removed b/c its a violation of their IP but when it happens to apple for violating IP, it's suddenly crap or bad?

Moto created the first cellphone didn't they? they prob have patents no one has heard of, they also created the first iphone(itunes phone)... apple got caught stealing. They are being sued by moto in the USA too for similar patents if these are pointless patents they wouldn't have a case, clearly they do.

the irony of it, apple just got a taste of their own medicine. now maybe they'll compete instead of suing everything.
Score: 12 Votes (Like | Disagree)
goosnarrggh Avatar
161 months ago
The whole issue is that Moto is refusing to license the patent under reasonable terms which obviously a court will decide they must do. I wouldn't be surprised if Apple did it voluntarily to set up exactly a scenario that you described.

It's not like this is the end of iPhone because of a frand patent violation LOL...
The original judgment was based on the argument that Motorola made a FRAND offer initially, but Apple refused it. Instead, Apple made a counter-offer that the original judge deemed to be non-FRAND. This put Apple into the category of wilful infringer.

Until Apple makes/accepts a truly FRAND offer, Motorola is totally within its rights to takes steps to prevent Apple from selling anything that continues to violate the patent. Yes, that equally applies to FRAND patents.

The instant Apple came back and offered/accepted a licensing deal that fit the definition of FRAND, Motorola would be compelled to immediately accept the deal and drop the injunction. Apple would still be on the hook to pay damages for past sales they made while they had been wilfully infringing.
Score: 11 Votes (Like | Disagree)