Here are your Apple rumors and AAPL news items for today:
Turnaround: In a surprise twist, the International Trade Commission (ITC) has reversed an earlier ruling and now says that older versions of Apple’s (AAPL) iPhone and iPad infringed on a Samsung patent, CNN notes. The ITC issued a ban on imports of the iPhone 4 and iPhone 3G, as well as models of the iPad 2 3G designed to work with AT&T (T) and T-Mobile (TMUS) wireless networks. The ban will not go into effect for 60 days. President Barack Obama has the authority to veto the ban if it is found to conflict with U.S. policy. The patent in question pertains to the technology that smartphones use to send and receive data. A preliminary ruling from the ITC had cleared Apple of any patent infringement. The decision surprised most observers. Apple will appeal the new ruling. In August, Apple won a $1 billion patent infringement verdict against Samsung in a California court, though that award was later reduced. Samsung and Apple have been battling each other over alleged patent violations in courts worldwide. The ITC decision does not affect Apple’s newer iPad and iPhone models, including its flagship iPhone 5, which debuted last September. Due to the models involved, the financial impact on Apple is expected to be minor even if the ban is upheld.
Second Place: Samsung has dealt Apple another blow, overtaking Apple’s share of the U.S. smartphone market in May, CNET notes. Canaccord Genuity says that the Samsung Galaxy 4S helped boost the South Korean electronics maker past Apple for the first time since the launch of the iPhone 5 last year. Samsung also lowered the price of its Galaxy S3 and Note 2 smartphones, boosting their appeal to consumers. Apple is expected to launch its next-generation iPhone 5S in September.
Hiring: Apple is planning to increase the number of employees at its Silicon Valley, California, operations by 50% over the next three years, CBS News notes. The company issued a report indicating that it will add as many as 7,400 new workers at its headquarters, based in Cupertino. Apple already employs about 16,000 people at its corporate offices in the city. The company is building a massive new headquarters complex that many describe as looking like a spaceship landing. The new complex is currently behind schedule and over budget, according to recent reports. Apple released the hiring report as part of its effort to obtain the final municipal approvals for the new headquarters building.
For more about the company, check out our previous Apple Rumors stories.