The ongoing patent dispute between Samsung and Apple recently led to a ban on past iPhone and iPad models in the United States. Just a month ago, the International Trade Commission (ITC) found the Cupertino-based company to be guilty of patent infringement, restricting the sales of the iPhone 3G, 3Gs and 4, as well as the 3G models of the iPad and iPad 2. The ban is set to take effect on August 4th.
Interestingly, some of Apple’s technological rivals have decided to stand up for the punished firm. Companies including the likes of Microsoft, Intel and Oracle are claiming that bans linked to standards-essential patents should not be permitted unless the circumstances are extenuating.
Regardless of this support, it’s unlikely that the ruling will be overturned. According to betanews, an ITC ban has not been upended since 1987; a decision which once again permitted the importation of Samsung memory chips. This time, the power is in the hands of US Trade Representative Michael Froman, who has already been contacted by major phone carriers Verizon and AT&T in an attempt to plead their case.
Many might think that with the iPhone 5 already released, the older versions might be inconsequential to Apple. After all, Apple no longer sells the iPhone 3 or 3GS, anyways. However, contrary to popular belief, the iPhone 4 is still selling extremely well due to its attractive price point. As a matter of fact, between April and June of this year, the iPhone 4 amassed nearly 18 percent of all iPhone sales.
Although the loss of revenue is certainly bothering Apple, the ban should have little long-term effect on the company. Consumers and the media now have their sights set on the upcoming iPhone 5S. For all intents and purposes, the iPhone 4 will be old news in a few months.