Apple has won a preliminary injunction against the Samsung Galaxy Tab 7.7, which sees the tablet banned in all EU countries.

The Galaxy Tab 7.7 was already banned in Germany, as Apple pressed the same successful case it used against the Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 with its smaller brother, which shares the same design that has got the Cupertino-based firm so riled.

Foss Patents now reports that the latest injunction sees the ban extended to the whole of the European Union, even though a UK court ruled that the Galaxy Tab 7.7 didn't infringe on Apple's patents, in a case earlier this month.

Update: We've spoken to Florian Mueller of Foss Patents, who has shed some more light onto the ban.

Mueller told TechRadar: "If Samsung sells the 7.7-inch Galaxy Tab in the EU, Apple can go to the German courts and request sanctions against the Korean firm.

"The courts will then have the power to fine Samsung, and in a very extreme case, even imprison its management.

"In the case of sales in Britain, the UK authorities will not take action against Samsung if it continues to sell the tablet, but the German courts could still issue fines as the Tab 7.7 is being sold in an EU country."

Galaxy Tab 10.1 free to roam

Although Apple did manage to get the Galaxy Tab 10.1 banned in Europe last year (which was subsequently lifted everywhere except in Germany), Samsung hit back with a slightly modified version of the tablet, known as the Galaxy Tab 10.1N, in order to circumnavigate the issue.

In a second ruling, the Dusseldorf Higher Regional Court upheld the ruling of the lower district court, agreeing that the Galaxy Tab 10.1N no longer violated Apple's patents, and was thus free to go on sale, although this ruling was made on a preliminary basis as well.

As both decisions are only in their preliminary stages, the final verdicts could still change, and both Apple's and Samsung's lawyers will be fighting hard to get the decisions to fall in their favour.

From: Foss Patents