Samsung, Apple in talks to end patent battle, report says

The two tech giants are reportedly attempting to hammer out a royalties deal that could finally end their ongoing patent dispute.

Samsung and Apple are trying again to come together on a possible patent accord, according to a new report.

Despite a two-year legal battle that appeared to have no end in sight, Apple and Samsung have started discussing the possibility of inking a royalties deal and putting an end to all of their litigation, an official at the Korea Fair Trade Commission told the Korea Times in a report published on Sunday.

According to that official, the talks are in their "working-level" stage right now, and the companies are attempting to reduce "differences over royalty payments." The Korean regulator is also working with American and European antitrust watchdogs to aid in arriving at a deal.

Apple and Samsung have been suing each other all over the world over the last few years. Last year, Apple CEO Tim Cook and Samsung Electronics chief Choi Gee-sung tried to hash out an agreement to end their patent dispute, but those 17-hour talks failed. Apple has since won an important patent infringement case in the US, which might have prompted Samsung to make a move on arriving at an agreement. That case alone could see Apple net $890 million .

At this point, Apple and Samsung both believe the other company is being unfair in the dollar values they want to place on the overall settlement. Samsung is willing to enter into a "cross-licensing" deal with Apple, where both companies can get the intellectual property they need for a set price, sources told the Korea Times. Apple is asking Samsung to pay a more than $30 fee for every device found to be in violation of its patents, according to the report.

If the companies can't arrive at a deal, a long, arduous legal process awaits. Early next year, the companies will again wage a patent-infringement battle, followed by several others.

CNET has contacted both Apple and Samsung. We will update this story when we have more information.

 

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