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Samsung drops Apple ban request in Europe

The smartphone maker is withdrawing its request for injunctions on Apple products in Germany, the U.K., France, Italy and the Netherlands, according to the Verge.


Samsung Electronics has withdrawn its requests to ban Apple products in several European countries, citing its wish to "protect consumer choice."

The Korean smartphone maker will drop its requests in Germany, the U.K., France, Italy and the Netherlands, according to the Verge, which got a statement from the company earlier today.

Foss Patents legal consultant Florian Mueller noted that Samsung never actually mentioned lawsuit in the statement, and that the company is still suing for compensation. Samsung has confirmed that it is still pursuing compensation.

Samsung had alleged that Apple had violated the use of its patents, which are considered essential to wireless technology. Apple contended that Samsung didn't license the patents out fairly, which the company is supposed to do under the principle of FRAND -- that is, on a fair, reasonable, and non-discriminatory basis.

The European Commission was looking into whether Samsung had broken European Union laws in regards to how it licenses its essential patents, which are patents that the industry has agreed are necessary to build even basic products.

Samsung said it was better to compete in the marketplace than in the courtroom, and said it would withdraw its requests for an injunction on Apple's products.

The lawsuits are part of a bigger battle between Apple and Samsung over intellectual property. The companies have sued each other in various courts around the world, with mixed results. Apple, notably, has won a significant case in the U.S., although another unrelated case is still set to be heard in 2014.

Here's Samsung's full statement:

Samsung remains committed to licensing our technologies on fair, reasonable and non-discriminatory terms, and we strongly believe it is better when companies compete fairly in the marketplace, rather than in court. In this spirit, Samsung has decided to withdraw our injunction requests against Apple on the basis of our standard essential patents pending in European courts, in the interest of protecting consumer choice.

CNET has contacted Apple comment, and we'll update the story when the company responds.

FRAND explained: Apple's not-so-secret favorite patent argument

Updated at 5:53 a.m. and 6:13 a.m. PT: to change the headline to reflect Samsung's withdrawal of its injunction request, add a comment from a legal consultant, and add Samsung's full statement.