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"Samsung Galaxy tablet and phone. Hmm, where have we seen that design before? Ah yes, WHEN WE WERE DESIGNING IT!" - Apple

That might be a bit of a paraphrase but that's the heart of a new lawsuit from Apple against Samsung. Apple says that Samsung's iPhone and iPad competitive devices are just knockoffs. Apple's lawsuit, filed Friday in federal court in Northern California,alleges that Samsung copied the look, product design, packaging and user interface of its products, violating its patents and trademarks.

"Rather than innovate and develop its own technology and a unique Samsung style for its smart phone products and computer tablets, Samsung chose to copy Apple's technology, user interface and innovative style in these infringing products," Apple said in its 38-page suit.

Apple is also involved in lawsuits with HTC, Motorola, and Nokia. It's a sticky situation. The smartphone industry is exploding and everyone wants the same basic features. So it's a bit like Taco Bell at this point: you can arrange the tortilla/beans/cheese/meat pattern in a different way and call it by a different name but the variation won't change the fact that it's all the same food.

About the author

John Moe is the host of Marketplace Tech Report, where he provides an insightful overview of the latest tech news.

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