It may be little consolation after a couple of years of disappointing sales, but the Motorola Xoom has at least earned a victory over the iPad in court. A German ruling has determined that the Xoom tablet is not a copy of the iPad's design, contradicting Apple's original claim that the Xoom infringed on three iPad patents.

Apple had requested that sales of the Motorola Xoom be banned across Europe on the basis of its infringed design patents.

However, the judge in the case had been leaning in Motorola's favour in prior hearings.

"Judge Johanna Brueckner-Hofmann said in March that the court considered the evenly bent back and shaped edges on the front of the Xoom tablet sufficient to give the product individual character," reports Dow Jones Newswires.

Patent court case

Even this Motorola victory is only partial, however, because the German court also rejected the company's counterclaim that the iPad's design patents are invalid. It's perhaps a reflection of the overall outcome that Apple has to pay two thirds of the court costs and Motorola one third.

See also:

Who's suing Apple this week? Mobile patent lawsuits round-up

What's Apple patented this week? Future technology roundup