Apple isn't quite content having the market-leading tablet called iPad. That's because the mobile-device maker sees a few too many of its ideas in competitors' offerings -- specifically Samsung.
Apple isn't beating around the bush on this one. The company is flat-out accusing Samsung of stealing ideas from the iPad and the iPhone -- and Apple is taking its bag of complaints to court.
On Friday, Apple filed a lawsuit in the U.S. District Court in Northern California that alleges Samsung trespassed on its patents and its trademark with the Galaxy product line, which includes the Galaxy S smartphone and the Galaxy Tab tablet.
"Rather than innovate and develop its own technology and a unique Samsung style for its smartphone products and computer tablets, Samsung chose to copy Apple's technology, user interface, and innovative style in these infringing products," Apple said in its suit.
Apple is also accusing Samsung of unfair competition. The iPad maker seeks injunctions as well as actual and punitive damages against the one-time ally. Apple also wants the court to rule that the alleged infringement was willful.
"It's no coincidence that Samsung's latest products look a lot like the iPhone and iPad, from the shape of the hardware to the user interface and even the packaging," Apple told All Things Digital's Ina Fried. "This kind of blatant copying is wrong, and we need to protect Apple's intellectual property when companies steal our ideas."
Samsung seems ready to fight Apple in court. In a published statement, Samsung said, "Samsung's development of core technologies and strengthening our intellectual-property portfolio are keys to our continued success. Samsung will respond actively to this legal action taken against us through appropriate legal measures to protect our intellectual property."
Tech Lawsuits Abound
This isn't the only high-profile legal battle in the smartphone market. And it's not the only high-profile legal battle at Apple. Nokia and Apple are brawling over smartphone-related patents. Meanwhile, Microsoft, Motorola and HTC are also among the companies turning to the courts for help.
In fact, a growing number of tech lawsuits are making headlines. In today's news, Apple is battling to get courts to dismiss an iTunes FairPlay antitrust suit. Apple wants the courts to squash accusations that it's running a monopoly. And Microsoft is battling a $290 million jury verdict in the Supreme Court.
"This says that the market is moving very fast and there is a lot of money at stake, so companies are trying to figure out how to fence and protect their intellectual property to maintain a competitive lead," said Al Hilwa, an analyst at IDC. "But also, these lawsuits are defensive and often aimed at setting examples, so it is hard to tell what is the thinking behind suing one of your major suppliers otherwise."