Smartphone giants Apple and Samsung have moved a step closer to settling their intellectual property dispute after mutually agreeing to drop their respective legal cases outside the US.
The two companies had been suing each other over alleged intellectual property infringement in a number of countries, including the UK, Germany, South Korea and Japan, with mixed success for each.
"Samsung and Apple have agreed to drop all litigation between the two companies outside the United States," the two companies said in a joint statement. "This agreement does not involve any licensing arrangements, and the companies are continuing to pursue the existing cases in US courts."
Although both companies have sought bans of the other's products in their respective court actions, they have only had limited success, and only Apple has scored a big "win", with its victory in a US court less than 10 miles from Apple's Cupertino headquarters.
In May last year, the two companies started to negotiated over an out-of-court settlement and the two companies' CEOs even sat down face-to-face in a mediation session. No agreement, however, was reached at that time.
The agreement between the two companies comes at a time when both companies are being eclipsed by smaller rivals: Samsung in China and India by local companies such as Xiaomi, Coolpad and Oppo in China, and Karbonn, Micromax and Xolo in India.
As a result, Apple is also losing marketshare for its proprietary iOS operating system to Android as Android low-end devices become increasingly functional.
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