Apple has filed a patent suit against Samsung, claiming that the South Korean manufacturer has copied many elements of its iPhone and iPad designs and user interface with the Galaxy range of phones and tablets.

The suit was filed with the US District Court in Apple's patch, Northern California, and alleges patent and trademark infringement, and unfair competition. If successful, the Cupertino giant will receive damages, an injunction against Samsung selling any more of its current Galaxy devices, and a finding that the alleged infringement was willful.

Speaking to US website Mobilized, Apple stated: "It’s no coincidence that Samsung’s latest products look a lot like the iPhone and iPad, from the shape of the hardware to the user interface and even the packaging. We need to protect Apple’s intellectual property when companies steal our ideas."

However, Samsung has hit back and may file a counter action of its own.

The manufacturer claims that Apple has violated Samsung's wireless technology patents, and has responded to the US firm's suit with resolve: "Samsung will respond actively to this legal action taken against us through appropriate legal measures to protect our intellectual property," it said in a statement.

It also said that Samsung has been successfully developing its own core technologies and building up its intellectual property portfolio of late.

It is currently unknown whether this court action jostling will affect the companies' working relationship. Apple is one of Samsung's key buyers of semiconductors and display panels. Its business accounts for four per cent of the South Korean manufacturer's $142 billion annual revenues.

What do you think? Are the Galaxy series of devices spookily similar to Apple's? Let us know in the comments below...