Why Apple and HTC settled their patent litigation

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Apple and HTC just announced a surprise settlement to their ongoing patent litigation, which spanned multiple lawsuits in courts around the world. The deal will see both companies drop all their charges and sign a 10-year patent cross-licensing agreement, which HTC says will “not have a material adverse impact” on its financials — meaning HTC is paying Apple at least some money.

It’s completely unexpected news, especially after Apple won a comprehensive billion-dollar victory against Samsung for infringing many of the same patents. But a little reflection reveals that both parties had much more to gain from ending the dispute than from carrying on:

  • Apple’s victory over Samsung is much less a predictor of future succes than you might…

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