Apple loses iPad case against Spanish company

Android-based tablets made by Spanish firm will ship after judge's ruling; Apple alleged IP infringements

Nuevas Tecnologias y Energias Catala SL, a five-person company in Valencia, Spain, has won an iPad-related court battle against Apple.

Apple sued the Spanish company in November 2010, alleging that it violated intellectual property related to the iPad, but a Spanish judge has issued a preliminary dismissal for the lawsuit.

Apple was initially able to get Spanish authorities to hold shipments of Nuevas Tecnologias' tablet shipments at Valencia's customs office. The tablets, made in China, contained design elements which Apple has registered as intellectual property, Apple alleged.

With the latest ruling, the 70 Nuevas Tecnologias NTK tablets being held in customs for the past year will finally be delivered to the company so it can market and sell them. The NTK tablets at the centre of the legal conflict run on the Android OS.

After Apple filed its lawsuit, Nuevas Tecnologias filed a complaint against Apple with Spain's Comisión Nacional de Competencia alleging antitrust violations.

Apple illegally abused its dominant position in the market to stop Nuevas Tecnologias from selling a competing tablet product, Nuevas Tecnologias alleged in its complaint. Spain's antitrust regulator hasn't issued a ruling yet.

Nuevas Tecnologias is also now pondering whether to file a counter-lawsuit against Apple seeking monetary compensation for the business it lost while the tablets were held at customs.

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Tags iPadAppleNuevas Tecnologias y Energias Catalantk

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