Could the patent war be over? Apple and Samsung have agreed to convene in San Francisco under the recommendation of the US courts in an attempt to come to some agreement over the long-standing patent war that has plagued both mobile giants.
Florian Mueller revealed the news on his Foss Patents blog, Apple and Samsung told the court: “As directed by the Court, Apple and Samsung are both willing to participate in a Magistrate Judge Settlement Conference with Judge Spero as mediator.”
Each of these two companies have repeatedly found reasons to sue each other over the various patents owned by each company. One of the most notable instances resulting in a redesigned version of Samsung’s Galaxy Tab 10.1 in certain markets in order to create a greater visual distinction between itself and Apple’s iPad.
The BBC spoke with analyst Andrew Milroy of Frost and Sullivan who explained how patents have been used by companies such as Apple and Samsung as a form of legal weapon, “In a market that is really fast growing, they have used whatever they possibly can to compete with each other. Patents are being used as a part of the armoury.“
Instances of litigation are not solely present in the US and in fact currently span across nine different countries with defensive proceedings also taking place in Spain (as a 10th location). Despite the conflict and rivalry in play here, Apple and Samsung partake in a large amount of business with each other estimated to account for around $8 billion worth per year.
Within the next 90 days, US Magistrate Judge Joseph C. Spero will mediate ADR (Alternative Dispute Resolution) proceedings between Apple’s CEO Tim Cook and Samsung’s CEO Gee-Sung Choi at a San Francisco courthouse. The aim of the proceedings is to come to a resolution without affecting sales of mobile devices such as phones and tablets from either company. We’ll bring you more news as soon as we get it.