By Michael Northcott Tuesday, 18 December 2012

Punch drunk Apple and Samsung call a truce

The fight between consumer electronics giants Apple and Samsung seems to have cooled a little, after the latter said it will play nice over some European product sales.

The international war between Samsung and Apple over who owns what patents for which bits of technology may be on the brink of a truce, after Samsung said it will drop its lawsuit seeking to get some Apple products banned in Europe. 

The Taiwanese company said that it wants to ‘compete fairly in the marketplace, rather than in court’, and that it is interested in ‘protecting consumer choice’. 

The announcement comes just hours after a judge in America rejected Apple’s request for a US sales ban on 26 Samsung products. The rejection from the judge was handed down in spite of a jury verdict earlier this year, which found Samsung to be infringing at least six of Apple’s patents.

The judge, Lucy H Koh, found that: ‘Samsung may have cut into Apple’s customer base somewhat, but there is no suggestion that Samsung will wipe out Apple’s customer base, or force Apple out of the business of making smartphones.’ She added: ‘The present case involves lost sales – not a lost ability to be a viable market participant.’

Similarly, Samsung had been fighting on pretty much the same grounds against Apple in Europe, but has suddenly decided enough is enough in this battle of the Titans.

The firms, whose iPhone (Apple) and Galaxy (Samsung) smartphones have most of the market sewn up between them, have filed lawsuits against each other in at least 10 countries in the last couple of years.

It remains to be seen whether Apple will still be after (tap tap) revenge, or if it will allow the tensions to ease. If Steve Jobs were still alive, you could bet your iPad it would be the latter…

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