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It would appear that the patent battle between HTC and Apple, which has been going on since early 2010, is finally closed, with the two companies agreeing to opt for a ten-year licensing agreement.

The dispute began over two years ago when Apple levied a complaint regarding twenty patents at HTC, claiming infringement. Of course after that the two slapped each other with dispute after dispute, and the fight has boiled on ever since. The sudden conclusion comes as something of a shock, since – as the Verge reports – HTC Chairwoman Cher Wang said just three months ago the Taiwanese manufacturer had no plans to settle its spat with Apple.

Right now, the exact details of the deal are closely guarded, but a statement released regarding the situation gives us brief words from HTC's CEO Peter Chou, and Apple's Tim Cook. Chou remarked "HTC is pleased to have resolved its dispute with Apple, so HTC can focus on innovation instead of litigation."

Cook, with a similar message, stated "We are glad to have reached a settlement with HTC. We will continue to stay laser focused on product innovation."

We'll keep you updated as more information emerges. In the meantime, just look below for the full statement.

Source: HTC, Apple Via Engadget, The Verge

Posted Nov 11, 2012
HTC AND APPLE SETTLE PATENT DISPUTE. All Patent Litigation Between The Companies Dismissed

1.Date of occurrence of the event:2012/11/11

2.Company name:HTC Corporation

3.Relationship to the Company (please enter "head office" or
"affiliate company"):Head Office

4.Reciprocal shareholding ratios:N/A

5.Cause of occurrence:HTC and Apple have reached a global settlement
that includes the dismissal of all current lawsuits and a ten-year
license agreement. The license extends to current and future patents
held by both parties. The terms of the settlement are confidential.

6.Countermeasures:None

7.Any other matters that need to be specified:There is no material
adverse impact on the financials of the Company.

HTC AND APPLE SETTLE PATENT DISPUTE

All Patent Litigation Between The Companies Dismissed

TAIPEI and CUPERTINO, California - November 11, 2012 – HTC and Apple have reached a global settlement that includes the dismissal of all current lawsuits and a ten-year license agreement. The license extends to current and future patents held by both parties. The terms of the settlement are confidential.

"HTC is pleased to have resolved its dispute with Apple, so HTC can focus on innovation instead of litigation," said Peter Chou, CEO of HTC.

"We are glad to have reached a settlement with HTC," said Tim Cook, CEO of Apple. "We will continue to stay laser focused on product innovation."

-end-

Liam Spradlin
Liam loves Android, design, user experience, and travel. He doesn't love ill-proportioned letter forms, advertisements made entirely of stock photography, and writing biographical snippets.

  • KB26

    Looks like apple's hitting puberty and growing up.

    • spydie

      Ha, you read that wrong. Apple didn't grow up... it won. Do you really think Apple would settle a dispute without being the financial winner?

      • DCMAKER

        agreed i wonder what apple is getting out of this

        • btod

          LTE. HTC said they would sue apple for using LTE since they are the pioneers of it and have the most patents on it

  • mgamerz

    Finally! This patent litigation is such BS.

    • DCMAKER

      this doesn't mean this deal was good for HTC

      • http://codytoombs.wordpress.com/ Cody Toombs

        Even if the deal isn't inherently better for HTC, it doesn't mean they aren't "benefiting" more than they might be "losing". Let me concoct a colorful scenario to illustrate :)

        Imagine your house is next to a really awful neighbor that lives off of disability and welfare checks while their dogs poo in your yard and their place is littered with 10 non-functioning trucks and cars in various states of assembly. One day, that neighbor inherits a huge house (let's make it a mansion) on the other side of town. He doesn't have the money to hire movers and he can't do the moving by himself. It might be a massive pain in the ass, but I think you'd agree it's in your best interests to help move the jerk across town just to get rid of him. He might be coming out way ahead, but you're getting something valuable out of it too.

        Now HTC doesn't have to plan on dedicating way too much of their income to fighting Apple in court across several countries. They don't have to worry about bought-off judges, questionable ITC bans or inexplicable preliminary injunctions on patents that should have never been granted. Even if they are giving up the potential to sue Apple on many things, they are surely going to save themselves from having to deal with that little dog yapping at them every other week.

        Don't get me wrong, I would like see HTC join in on a legal gang-raping of Apple one day... But I would be just as happy seeing them end Apple the good ol' fashioned way, better products at lower prices.

        • DCMAKER

          i agree with you 100% but still doesn't mean its fair or best :) but very nicely stated! +1

        • DCMAKER

          best way of putting it is better of the two evils right ^-^

  • joser116

    laser focused on innovation my ass

    • http://twitter.com/physicalist09 Physicalist

      Laser focused on innovation done by others (pull down notification center, 7 inch tablets etc) ;-)

      • krazyfrog

        Funny how people have clung on to the idea of Apple stealing notification center from Android, which is the only real thing they took in years. If you start listing the number of things Android stole from iOS over the years the list would run in pages.

        • http://codytoombs.wordpress.com/ Cody Toombs

          That's the item most people know and it happens to be grossly obvious to any onlooker. Even my completely non-technical friends (including some iPhone users) recognized that particular copy and made jokes about it. This is the reason most people reference it, because it's SOOO obvious and most people don't feel the need to go any further than that one (nor should they, it's knowledge that doesn't matter in the real world).

          In reality there would be a very long list of the really tiny things that Apple has "copied" and there would be a list of roughly equal length for the things pure vanilla Android has "copied" (I prefer to look at it as "also implemented"). Both lists would get much longer when you include OEM skins and launchers, where there are some more prolific examples. One key difference, Apple sues over the insignificant things, which has drawn a lot of negative opinions in their direction.

          Apple has claimed credit for an obscene number of designs and inventions that are known to not belong to them (patents on multi-touch and gestures instantly come to mind). Apple even spent two decades claiming credit for inventing the original mouse, and there was clearly documented proof to contradict that story. I'm not saying that they don't deserve credit for many things, but a lot of people are so sick of seeing them claim credit on things they don't have a right to, it's hard to blame people for being cynical towards Apple and their motives.

    • sliders7

      Bloody Arrogant Apple! such a Bullies!

  • http://twitter.com/rohanXm Rohan Mathur

    Fucking U.S. Patent System. We need reform NOW.

  • Nathan J

    Cook, with a similar message, stated "We are glad to have reached a
    settlement with HTC," said Tim Cook, CEO of Apple. "We will continue to
    stay laser focused on product innovation."

    ---

    That's funny. Apple hasn't innovated anything in years. The iPhone was innovative in 2007 (both in design, and the ludicrous idea that people would switch to a metropolitan-only cell carrier to get one) but each iteration (including the tablets) have just been more of the same, leeching features from Android (and others) along the way, but half-assing them, like finally adding widescreen, but it's not even 720p, while HTC is about to drop a 1080p phone. Apple is just lazy.

  • ndjsaa

    People should be glad, but the hate never ends I guess. Im really wondering what youre getting for insulting a phone, I dont like the iPhone neither, but it is innovative and well made. Whatever. Ive got the feeling Apple got some important licenses as well.. else they wouldnt settle this

    • http://twitter.com/physicalist09 Physicalist

      I'll be glad once I'm certain HTC didn't overpay or agree to drop Android (although I doubt that).

  • http://codytoombs.wordpress.com/ Cody Toombs

    Is this possibly Apple trying to reduce the number of future plaintifs? This sounds very similar to the deal Apple cut with Microsoft a long time ago, and ever since Apple has done a ton that would have seen them sued into oblivion.

    So, do we see Apple and Samsung reaching a similar deal soon, or do we think Apple just wants to be able to focus more of their attention on suing Samsung out of the Android business?

    • aiden9

      Was wondering something similar. With HTC's declining presence and Samsung holding the largest chunk of Android users it wouldn't surprise me if Apple decided HTC wasn't worth going after any more. Similar to how Apple hasn't gone after Sony or LG, the market share isn't worth going after.

      • DCMAKER

        agree well said

  • coversnails

    The only likely result of this is either HTC will make less profit on every device, or they'll increase the cost to the consumer.

  • Fran

    Now HTC should give Google all the patents it owns free of charge, so HTC would get access to both Apple and Google patents, and Apple would get access to none of HTC's.

  • http://twitter.com/Darkmyth_pt Darkmyth PT

    laser foccused on suing!!!!

  • Mike

    I actually think HTC had Apple over the barrel with their LTE patents which Apple was highly likely in violation of. Software infringement can always be fixed with an ota...How LTE radios operate..I'm thinking not so much? Apple would never let the public know they lost and were banned from selling their devices.

    Apple has made it clear they are suing to kill..even when they're found wrong they respond with smart arse apologies that no one can see anyway on their website...lol

    Kudos to HTC that they can now proceed worry free, but sometimes it is fun to cut your own nose off to spite your own face...would have loved to see them force feed Apple a merda sandwich with those LTE patents.

    Cannot wait for the DNA...hopefully they learn to advertise as well as Samsung so they're beautifully built phones sell as well.

  • btod

    This must be why HTC hasn't sued apple for using LTE like they publicly stated they would

  • JG

    Yea for not being able to speed read... I initially read Cook's statement as "We will continue to stay lesser focused on product innovation.", instead of laser focused... Wasn't sure if it was lesser than HTC was, or that they were putting more focus on litigation & less on innovation....

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