The Samsung Galaxy Nexus smartphone faces the threat of a sales ban in the US after Apple issued a preliminary injunction against the device claiming it infringes on four key patents in use on its iPhone devices.
The lawsuit, filed in with the US District Court for the Northern District of California, relates to patents that cover technologies including Siri's unified search capabilities, slide-to-unlock, technology that allows users to dial phone numbers directly from websites and predictive text functionality.
Samsung said it was aware of the filings by Apple and would contest them.
"We continue to assert our intellectual property rights and defend against Apple's claims to ensure our continued innovation and growth in the mobile communications business," it added.
V3 contacted Apple for comment but had received no reply at the time of publication.
Patent analyst Florian Mueller said that Apple was targeting the Nexus device due to its importance to Samsung at attracting first-time smartphone buyers.
He explained that while Google may be able to help Samsung avoid any sales ban doing so would have legal ramifications.
"Google could remove the functionality protected by any of these patents in order to keep the product on sale, but if it changes the program code of a lead device, this would make it particularly clear to everyone else in the market that there's an infringement issue," he said in a blog post.
Mueller said Google is likely to be particularly concerned by the patent Apple is contesting that relates to a "universal interface for retrieval of information in a computer system", which for Apple relates to the use of voice search tool Siri, as it could affect Google.
"If Apple successfully enforces this patent against Samsung, Google will also face a major problem in its own core business, search," he said.
"Given that Google wholeheartedly endorses Motorola's aggressive actions against Apple, it's of strategic importance for Apple to be able to also pose a threat to future generations of the Google search engine."
The filing is the latest in a long line of legal battles between the two firms as they seek to block the sales of one another's devices in several jurisdictions and over several issues of both technological and design-based patents.
Dan Worth is the news editor for V3 having first joined the site as a reporter in November 2009. He specialises in a raft of areas including fixed and mobile telecoms, data protection, social media and government IT. Before joining V3 Dan covered communications technology, data handling and resilience in the emergency services sector on the BAPCO Journal.