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Apple to settle with Samsung? Korean honcho: 'Fuggedaboutit'

Despite HTC's settlement, Samsung won't negotiate 'at all'

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Although HTC and Apple reached an out-of-court settlement of their patent-infringement squabbles on Saturday, don't expect such an amicable armistice in Cupertino's ongoing patent war with Samsung.

"It may be true that HTC may have agreed to pay 300 billion won ($276m) to Apple, but we don't intend to [negotiate] at all," said Samsung's mobile and IT division headman Shin Jong-kyun, reports Korea's Yonhap News Agency.

"At all" is a rather far-reaching statment, and one that indicates Samsung plans to carry on its design and technology patent fight with Apple in the courts rather than in a contentious, lawyer-filled negotiating chamber.

The Samsung/Apple patent wars began in April 2011, when Cupertino filed suit against the Korean electronics giant for copying the iOS look-and-feel, alleging that Samsung had "slavishly" copied such UI elements as "square icons with rounded corners."

The war quickly heated up. Samsung threatened, then filed a countersuit, Apple won a legal maneuver here and there, Samsung opened another front at the US International Trade Commission, sales of Samsung's Galaxy Tab were blocked in Australia and the EU, Apple added a fourth continent to its world war by filing suit against Samsung in Japan, Apple won a whopping $1.05bn judgement in a California court – only to have Samsung demand that the decision be thrown out because of a biased juror, and so on, and so on, and so on.

If you're thoroughly masochistic – and you have an inordinate amount of free time – just search for "Apple Samsung patent" in the upper right of this page, and you can follow the entire sordid saga, Reg report by Reg report.

Of all this wrangling, The Reg's favorite moment – aside from the aforemention Battle of Rounded Corners – was when Samsung cited a scene from Stanley Kubrik's 2001: A Space Odyssey as proof of prior art in defense against one of Apple's allegedly violated design patents.

Or maybe it was when a UK judge handed Samsung a win, saying that the two companies' fondleslabs couldn't be confused with each other because the Galaxy was "not as cool" as the iPad. Or when Apple's legal team whined to a Parisian judge that Samsung had launched a "total war" against them. Or when Apple went to ludicrous lengths to camouflage its court-ordered website apology to Samsung. Or when Samsung created an ad lampooning Apple fanbois waiting in line for their next iPhone fix, with one slacker/hipster saying, "I could never get a Samsung; I'm creative," only to be told by another queuer, "Dude, you're a barista."

When the original April 2011 suit was filed, we predicted that Reg readers should "Expect a settlement of this lawsuit, perhaps with a few interface tweaks and possibly some licensing cash flowing from Seoul to Cupertino." After Shin's latest pronouncement, it appears we were wrong.

Never underestimate the pertinaciousness of the lawyerly class, we've learned. ®

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