Apple vs Samsung: CEOs set to meet Monday in patent talks

samsung-vs-appleThe CEOs of two of the world’s biggest tech companies will face each other in a California courthouse on Monday as they seek to disentangle themselves from a patent dispute that has been hanging over the firms for more than a year.  

Apple’s Tim Cook and Samsung’s Choi Gee-sung were ordered  last month by US federal judge Lucy Koh to attend the so-called settlement conference where the two firms will be expected to make a serious effort to resolve their differences. If no settlement is reached, the case is likely to go to trial late July. 

The patent dispute kicked off in California in April 2011 when Apple accused Samsung of “slavishly” copying elements of the iPhone and iPad in the design of its Galaxy line of mobile handsets and tablets. Samsung countersued, claiming that the Cupertino-based company had infringed some of its patents. Since then, lawyers at both companies have been working overtime, filing around 50 patent-related lawsuits in 10 countries. 

The two company bosses will meet in a courthouse in San Francisco, overseen by magistrate judge Joseph C. Spero. Both will be accompanied by their legal teams as they talk through the details of the dispute.   

On Sunday, a leading executive at the South Korean electronics giant, JK Shin, told Reuters that Samsung was keen to find some common ground with Apple in a bid to sort out the ongoing issue.

“There is still a big gap in the patent war with Apple but we still have several negotiation options including cross-licensing,” said Shin, who will be present at the talks. 

Even if tomorrow’s talks between the two companies go well, it’s expected to be some time before any actual deal is reached. It’s safe to say that the final chapter of the Apple-Samsung patent dispute story is far from being written.

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