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Samsung v Apple: the battle continues

Samsung has voluntarily dropped one of its lawsuits against Apple but the tit-for-tat legal battle rages on.

Spot the difference: Samsung's Galaxy S is on the left and Apple's iPhone 4 is on the right.
Spot the difference: Samsung's Galaxy S is on the left and Apple's iPhone 4 is on the right.
Image: AP Photo/Ahn Young-joon

SAMSUNG ELECTRONICS CO. has dropped one of its patent infringement lawsuits against tech giants Apple, Bloomberg reported this weekend.

The company says it has done so in an effort to “streamline” legal proceedings and not because it’s giving up on its long-running fight against Apple.

Apple and Samsung have now been waging war against each other over the makeup of their products for more than three months, with each claiming the other has stolen their original ideas.

There are law suits underway in a least five countries, including South Korea, Japan, Germany and the UK. The withdrawal of the California suit will not affect the remaining US cases or litigation in other countries, according to Bloomberg.

In response to accusations from Apple that it had copied the designs of its iPhone and iPad, Samsung claimed Apple had abused its intellectual property rights first.

The background

In April, Apple sued Samsung, claiming that the South Korea-based had built products too similar in design to the Apple iPhone and iPad. At the time, Steve Jobs’ firm said Samsung had used the “trade dress” of its smartphone and tablet in its Galaxy line.

Samsung countersued that same month, saying Apple infringed on 10 of its patents.

In a separate court case last month, a US judge rejected Samsung’s request to see Apple’s fifth generation iPhone and third version of the iPad.

In statements to the Wall Street Journal last night, spokespeople for both companies touted the need to protect their intellectual property.

The battle is an interesting one as Jobs had previously dismissed the Galaxy line of products, giving the impression that he did not believe them to be a threat to the popular iPhone or iPad.

However, it’s a tricky situation because in some ways both companies need each other as Apple is one of Samsung’s biggest clients. It relies on it for component supplies such as chips and LCD displays.

Yesterday, Samsung said that it had sold 3 million of its Galaxy SII devices, confirming its number 2 position in the smartphone market.

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