The Apple-Samsung war is over (for now)

Does anyone really think this is the end?
APPLE, Samsung, Tech, Copyright, Legal, Court, US, Infringement, Technology, Business


Peace... for now.

When Darth Vader turned away from the Dark Side and threw Emperor Palpatine down that long, long shaft into the Death Star's reactor, we thought the long battle for peace, justice and freedom in the galaxy was finally over. But, three decades later, the brave Resistance finds itself struggling against the villainous First Order in another galactic civil war.

Sure, that's Star Wars, but there are distinct similarities between a long time ago in a galaxy far, far away and planet earth circa 2018, at least the ongoing legal feud between tech behemoths Apple and Samsung.

According to court documents filed on Wednesday in the United States, the companies have agreed to a settlement in their epic, seven-year patent infringement battle. The showdown flared in 2011, when Apple accused Samsung of "slavishly" copying design and software features of its iconic iPhones.

While financial amounts of the settlement haven't been disclosed, it's safe to assume it's quite a bit. After all, in 2012 a jury ruled that Samsung had to pay Apple more than US$1 billion. A federal judge later reduced that penalty to "only" US$550 million.

Not wanting to pay more than half a billion dollars - or more than the entire economies of some countries - the court battle eventually spilled into the US Supreme Court, which in 2016 reversed a lower court ruling that Samsung owed Apple US$399 million. But the Supreme Court also sent the case back to lower courts to sort out the exact financial penalty - and thus the battle continued.

Most recently, a jury ruled in May that Apple was owed US$539 million.

So, like the battle between the Light Side and the Dark Side for control of the Force, we're not exactly holding our breath that this latest settlement is the ultimate end.

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