Samsung's Galaxy Nexus pulled from Google Play store amid ban

Samsung Electronics' Galaxy Nexus smartphone was pulled from Google's (NASDAQ:GOOG) online Play store after a federal judge denied Samsung's attempt to block a U.S. sales ban on the device from taking effect. The ban was ordered late last week as part of Samsung's ongoing patent battle with Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL), which heads to trial at the end of the month.

samsung galaxy nexus

Samsung Galaxy Nexus

Google, which started selling an unlocked HSPA+ version of the Galaxy Nexus in April, told the The Verge that the device is no longer on sale but should be shipping again next week. The Galaxy Nexus is still available from other online retailers, including Amazon and Target.

Google and Samsung are working together to deliver an over-the-air software update to the device which will modify the phone's search bar, since the infringing patent in question relates to Google's unified search feature. Essentially, the update would limit the search bar on the phone to delivering only Web-based search results, according to the The Verge

The Galaxy Nexus order from U.S. District Judge Lucy Koh echoes a similar one she made on Samsung's GalaxyTab 10.1 tablet. Such pre-trial injunctions are rare, which made Apple's victories on the issue that much more notable. Samsung is appealing both orders.

Apple and Samsung, which are the top smartphone vendors in the world, have been locked in a worldwide patent battle since last year. Apple first sued Samsung in April 2011, claiming that Samsung "slavishly" copied its iPhone design. Samsung countersued and since then the patent battle between the companies has spread to multiple continents, generating dozens of cases in 10 countries.

For more:
- see this Reuters article
- see this WSJ article (sub. req.)
- see this The Verge article
- see this separate The Verge article

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Article updated July 5 with Samsung Galaxy Nexus image.