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Samsung drops Apple legal cases across Europe

18 Dec 2012
Apple iPhone fighting Samsung Galaxy SIII

Samsung has announced it is ending legal action seeking to ban Apple devices in Europe in the first sign of a possible peace being made between the two fierce rivals.

A statement from the South Korean firm said that it would rather focus on beating Apple through innovation and products than litigation that would hurt consumers.

"In this spirit, Samsung has decided to withdraw our injunction requests against Apple on the basis of our standard essential patents pending in European courts, in the interest of protecting consumer choice," it said.

"We strongly believe it is better when companies compete fairly in the marketplace, rather than in court."

The move does not end Samsung's lawsuits over standards patents in general where it is seeking financial relief, but removes its request for sales bans against Apple's products.

Cases the firm has had against Apple include those in the Netherlands, Germany, France, Italy and the UK, and based on patents relating to technologies such as touchscreen inputs and 3G standards.

Apple had not responded to a request for comment from V3 on the announcement.

The move comes after Apple lost a request in the US courts to get some of Samsung's products banned from sale in the country after a jury had earlier ruled Samsung owed Apple $1bn in damages for design and technology patent infringements.

The latest move by Samsung could be seen as a de-escalation in the legal spat with even those overseeing the cases urging the two firms to try and resolve their differences amicably.

It could also be an effort to appease European Commission investigators who are currently looking to see if the firm is absuing its patents around 3G services, which began at the start of the year.

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Dan Worth

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

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