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Samsung hauls Apple into court over emoticon patent :-(

Now the big guns are coming out in smartphone war

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Samsung has opened a new offensive in its ongoing patent dispute with smartphone arch-rival Apple.

Fresh claims, filed in Germany, charge Apple with violating a pair of patents relating to the implementation of the WCDMA 3G telecom standard and another two patents relating to smartphone utilities, one of which involves the display of emoticons.

"(Samsung) made four more claims; two are standard-related patents and the other two are utility patents. And a court said it would make these claims separate from the April lawsuit," a Samsung spokesman told Reuters.

A German regional court in Mannheim dealing with the separate but related lawsuit over 3G handset tech, filed in April, said on Friday that it expected to publish a judgment in this case on 2 March.

The scores are even so far in the bruising smartphone-tablet patent battle between Samsung and Apple. An Australian court lifted a ban on the sale of the Galaxy Tab fondleslab in the country in late November. However Samsung suffered a setback days before this when a Paris court refused to block sales of Apple's iPhone 4S in France.

Earlier this month a US court rejected Apple's bid to get an early ban on the sale of Samsung products in the country. ®

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