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Apple may have to reveal iPad sales to have chance of banning Galaxy Tab in Australia

A judge in Australia has said that if Apple wants to achieve a ban on sales of Samsung’s Galaxy Tab 10.1 in the country, then it should reveal regional sales figures for its iPad and iPad 2.

Apple doesn’t like revealing sales figures, so it’ll be interesting to see how the company weighs up the pros and cons of doing so. In other words, how keen is it to see off Samsung’s tablet in Australia?

The judge’s comments came as the Cupertino company is seeking to prove that Samsung has copied elements of the iPad in its creation of the Galaxy Tab. The Korean electronics company recently delayed the launch of its tablet in Australia while it continues its patent battle with Apple.

According to a Bloomberg report, Federal Court Justice Annabelle Bennett said in a Sydney court that if Apple wants to prove that Samsung’s tablet would affect sales of the iPad in Australia, they should present the court with sales figures of the iPad in countries where both devices are available.

Bennett told the court, “Unless Apple puts on evidence showing the impact in the US or UK, I can’t draw any positive assumptions.”

Samsung had asked for the sales figures, claiming they would show that sales of the Galaxy Tab had no effect on sales of the iPad. While the judge said she would not order Apple to reveal them, it was made clear that such figures would help the American company’s case – provided they backed up its claims, of course.

Samsung’s lawyer, Neil Murray, argued that its Galaxy tablet has no impact on sales of Apple’s iPad. “People want an Android product, so they will buy an Android product,” he told the judge.

Apple lawyer Steven Burley responded by saying that the “remarkable similarity of the Samsung product” in terms of “functionality and appearance” means that Samsung’s tablet would have an adverse effect on sales of the iPad.   

Patent battles between the two companies have been continuing for months in a number of countries. Apple is accusing Samsung of copying the design of several of its products.

The patent battle taking place in Australia is expected to be ruled upon by a Sydney court later this month.

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