Apple and Samsung chiefs agree to mediation, settlement discussions in February


Samsung and Apple’s legal teams have got to be sick of the site of each other by now. The two companies have been battling it out across the globe in dozens of patent litigation squabbles for years now. Apple objects to Sammy copying its designs, while Samsung wants a fair licensing fee for its standards essential patents.

The biggest case between the two companies finally came to some sort of end in November when Judge Koh and the jury decided Apple was owed just under $300 million extra in damages, on top of the $640 million already decided on.

A second big patent court case is set to begin in March this year, but the powers that be (courts) want the two companies to play nice and come to a settlement to avoid the lengthy and expensive legal battle in court. According to Reuters, the two have agreed to attend a mediation session. February 19th is the date given as a rough time frame for the talks.

Both CEOs, Tim Cook and Oh-Hyun Kwon will be at the session with in-house lawyers to try and “discuss settlement opportunities.”

Settlement talks between the two companies are rarely fruitful, and it’s unlikely they will be this time. Apple believes fiercely that it should protect its designs and intellectual property. In almost every case of Samsung copying, it’s done so despite the fact that those patents aren’t absolutely necessary. Samsung’s patents on the other hand are the exact opposite. Apple doesn’t have a choice but to use them (mostly cellular/connectivity tech).

Only time will tell if the two are prepared to come to some sort of cross-licensing deal. Apple has done so in the past with HTC, a couple of years ago the two agreed on a 10-year deal that barred them from suing each other. If Samsung and Apple can do the same, it’d free the two companies’ diaries and bank balances from the time-consuming court dates.

Via: Reuters

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