Apple, Samsung agree to mediation next month


NEW YORK CITY: The chief executives of Apple and Samsung have agreed to attend a mediation session by mid-February to discuss their legal battle over smartphone patents, court documents showed on Wednesday (Thursday in Manila).

Senior legal executives from both companies met on Monday to “discuss settlement opportunities,” read a filing to the US District Court in San Jose that is handling the patent case.

It said Apple Chief Executive Officer Tim Cook and his Samsung counterpart Kwon Oh-Hyun would attend the session to be overseen by a jointly chosen mediator on or before February 19, along with three to four in-house attorneys each. No outside lawyers will be allowed.

This is not the first time for Apple and Samsung to seek a settlement out of court. But a court-imposed mediation session in May 2012 failed to produce results.

The two electronics giants are currently set to battle it out in court in March. US District Judge Lucy Koh had asked that the two firms make a mediation proposal before the March trial.

Samsung, the world’s biggest maker of smartphones, has been ordered to pay Apple more than $900 million after a retrial on some of the issues in the case.

But the case, one of several being played out in courts and administrative agencies around the world, has not dented sales of Samsung, which has vaulted ahead of Apple in many markets on a global scale.



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