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Apple and Samsung try to settle patent battle out of court

It's unlikely to work
Tue May 20 2014, 12:55
Apple iPhone fighting Samsung Galaxy SIII

BITTER RIVALS Apple and Samsung reportedly have agreed to begin settlement talks, amid their ongoing patent battles in US courts.

That's according to the Korea Times, which has heard "from people directly involved with the matter" that the two firms have agreed to try to reach an out of court settlement.

The anonymous insider said, "Samsung has recently resumed working-level discussions with Apple and the key issue is how to dismiss all lawsuits."

This follows the firms' most recent patent battle which ended earlier this month with a jury returning a mixed verdict. The jury found that Samsung infringed three Apple patents and ordered the firm to pay $119.6m in damages, much less than the $2.2bn sought by Apple. However, it also found that Apple infringed a Samsung patent, and ordered the US firm to pay $158,400.

This mixed jury verdict motivated the resumption of settlement talks, the Korea Times noted. "Some more time will be needed to fix terms of details such as royalty payments in return for using patents owned by each before reaching a full agreement," it quoted the inside source as saying.

However, don't expect the two firms to settle any time soon. As reported by Bloomberg, Apple lawyer Mark Selwyn said yesterday that reaching a settlement will be "impossible" as long as Samsung refuses to agree that Apple's participation in talks can't be used in any proceedings over royalties or possible sales bans.

Samsung lawyer Michael Fazio unsurprisingly didn't agree, and blamed Apple for the lack of a truce so far. "Simply put, though both parties contend that they are committed to resolution, only Apple seeks to impose an obstacle to this resolution through a unilateral condition," he said.

This news comes just days after Apple and Google agreed to dismiss all patent disputes, having reached a settlement outside the courts. µ


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