Update: Apple has recently issued a statement concerning the issue of iPhone 6 sales:
“iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus as well as iPhone 6s, iPhone 6s Plus and iPhone SE models are all available for sale today in China. We appealed an administrative order from a regional patent tribunal in Beijing last month and as a result the order has been stayed pending review by the Beijing IP Court.”
According to Bloomberg, a Beijing Intellectual Property Office has passed a ruling that the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus violates the design patent of a Chinese smartphone.It said that Apple must stop sales of both smartphone models within Bejing.
Bizarre intellectual property rulings like these are not unusual in China. But, this one takes the cakes because the Bali 100 C the smartphone patent that Apple apparently copied from looks nothing like the Apple iPhone 6. Apple has already filed a lawsuit calling for the patent ruling to be annulled. AN IP specialist Ted Chwu said that Apple has a few legal option available to fight against the ruling.
“If the position by the Beijing IP office is upheld and Apple doesn’t appeal further, then in theory they would n0t be able to sell the Apple iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus. Apple can try to stave off a sales cease by appealing in several venues, including the Beijing Higher People’s Court and the Supreme People’s Court.” – Ted Chwu.
Speculation is that the ruling is likely an attempt to achieve a financial settlement with Apple that will benefit the Bali 100 C manufacturers.By the looks of it is clear that there is no valid basis for the claim. However, Apple does sometimes settle disputes by financial settlements rather than go through protracted legal proceedings.
These ruling is going to put a huge bump in Apple iPhone 6 sales especially because it comes at a time when iPhone sales are already down.
Fortunately, this bizarre ruling applies only within Beijing city for now. But the city has around 22 million people, and could set a precedent for the rest of China if not overturned. It seems hard to imagine that it won’t be annulled by a court, but nothing is ever certain with China.