Apple, Samsung Plan Patent Settlement Talks

The chief executives of Apple Inc. and Samsung Electronics Co. will meet to try to reach a settlement before the next round of patent litigation begins later this year in California, according to a court filing late Wednesday.

The planned settlement talks come in response to a court order that the two sides submit a proposal for mediation before facing off again in a trial slated to start in March.

Apple and Samsung have attempted mediation in the past, but were unsuccessful in reaching an agreement.

The filing said legal executives for Apple and Samsung met in January to discuss mediation and agreed on a mediator with experience in high-profile disputes. The talks are set to take place by Feb. 19 and both companies’ CEOs along with their in-house counsels will attend.

An Apple spokeswoman declined to comment. Samsung wasn’t immediately available for comment.

In the first U.S. patent-infringement case between the two technology companies, a federal jury ordered the South Korean company to pay Apple $930 million for infringing on the U.S. company’s intellectual property. This next case pertains to a different set of Apple patents used in more recent products such as Samsung’s Galaxy S III smartphone.

Since the March trial involves newer products that were bigger sellers, industry experts say there is a potential of an even larger damages award if Samsung is found to have infringed on Apple’s patents.

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