Apple and Samsung agree settlement in seven-year-long battle

The Apple vs Samsung iPhone-copying lawsuit is finally over

Apple and Samsung have settled their seven-year patent dispute over Apple's allegations that Samsung copied the iPhone's design and software, reports CNN.

According to a report in CNET, Judge Lucy Koh signed the order, "dismissing all suits with prejudice, which means another case can't be filed on the same claim".

Neither Apple nor Samsung has commented on this new development.

In its 2011 complaint, Apple wrote: "Instead of pursuing independent product development, Samsung has chosen to slavishly copy Apple's innovative technology, distinctive user interfaces, and elegant and distinctive product and packaging design, in violation of Apple's valuable intellectual property rights". Terms of the settlement were not given. It was unclear how this week's ruling would affect that settlement.

Smartphone rivals Samsung and Apple have been locked in a vicious court battle over allegedly stolen patents. This verdict prompted Apple to issue a statement claiming their battle with Samsung was always about "more than money", and that their primary goal with the suits was to "protect the hard work and innovation" of their team.

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In 2012, a USA jury awarded California-based Apple $1.05bn in damages for the copied features, which included design elements like the screen that displays icons in a grid.

Samsung paid US$548m of the US$1.05b owed to Apple in 2015, but appealed all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court to reverse the US$399m decision. In May, a USA jury awarded Apple $539 million. But the case has had a lasting impact on United States patent law.

The whole thing started when Samsung released some Galaxy phones in 2010-11 that looked a lot like the iPhone.

The retrial regarding damages was one element of a $548 million penalty - knocked down from an original $1 billion jury award - Samsung was ordered to pay for copying iPhone patents.

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