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Apple and Samsung’s 7-year patent battle ends with a yawn

Apple and Samsung’s 7-year patent battle ends with a yawn
[Photo: Hal Gatewood/Unsplash]

Apple’s seven-year-long patent battle with Samsung had begun to feel like a permanent fact of life. But it suddenly ended today after the two sides agreed to cease further claims, counterclaims, and appeals.

The whole thing started when Samsung released some Galaxy phones in 2010-11 that looked a lot like the iPhone. The court originally sided with Apple in 2012, ordering Samsung to pay more than $1 billion in damages. The two companies spent the next six years battling in court over the damages amount.

The terms of the settlement between the two tech giants weren’t part of the court documents filed today. But the last major event in the case came in May when the court ordered Samsung to pay Apple $539 million in damages.

The outcome of the case will likely have no bearing on the pricing, features, or design of either company’s phones. The most interesting thing about the case is how long it dragged on. What we’d really like to know is how rich the lawyers got during the seven-year saga. Here’s “macduke” writing in the comments section over at MacRumors:

“Dang! I figured the kids I’ve been raising since this thing started would have time to grow up, go to law school and work on this case someday.”

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