Will Motorola Xoom be Apple's next patent target?

Motorola Xoom

Motorola's Xoom tablet could be next in the firing line for Apple's patent war lawyers.

A preliminary EU-wide injunction imposed by a German court yesterday saw Samsung's Galaxy Tab tablet withdrawn from sale in the EU, and, according to a prominent patents blogger, Motorola is also facing trouble.

"Prior to or simultaneously with the motion for a preliminary injunction against Samsung, Apple also filed a complaint with the same court over the design of the Motorola Xoom tablet," said Florian Mueller on the Foss Patents blog.

"Apple filed with the same court in Dsseldorf a complaint over the design of the Motorola Xoom, but it doesn't state whether that complaint included a request for a preliminary injunction," he added.

"While it's not stated explicitly, I suppose that the complaint against Motorola also asks the court for an EU-wide injunction - but perhaps just for a permanent injunction without a previous preliminary one."

A permanent injunction application may be more likely to succeed because the Xoom has been on sale for more than a month, Mueller said.

Preliminary injunctions are more normally used to challenge a product when it first comes to market.

Apple and Motorola are already involved in a dispute involving 40 patents in the US, and the war appears to have spread to the European courts.

IT Pro's sister title PC Pro contacted both firms, but neither had responded at the time of publication.