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Samsung Seeks Copy of Apple’s HTC Settlement Over Patents

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Nov. 17 (Bloomberg) -- Samsung Electronics Co. asked a court to force Apple Inc. to turn over a copy of its settlement with HTC Corp., saying it’s “highly relevant” to Apple’s request for an order blocking sales of Samsung smartphones.

It’s “almost certain” that Apple’s settlement with HTC covers some of the patents at issue in its dispute with Samsung, according to a filing yesterday by the Suwon, South Korea-based company in federal court in San Jose, California. The agreement may undermine Apple’s claim that Samsung’s patent infringement can’t be resolved with license payments, according to the filing.

“Apple’s apparent willingness to license these patents supports Samsung’s argument that Apple cannot show irreparable harm because monetary damages are adequate,” Samsung said in the filing.

Apple won a $1.05 billion patent-infringement verdict in August in a jury trial against against Samsung in San Jose. U.S. District Judge Lucy H. Koh scheduled a December hearing to consider Apple’s request for a permanent U.S. sales ban on eight Samsung smartphone models and the Tab 10.1 tablet computer. She will also consider Samsung’s bid to get the verdict thrown out based on claims of juror misconduct.

Apple, which had accused HTC of copying features that made its iPhone unique, on Nov. 10 settled all global lawsuits with HTC and agreed to a 10-year licensing deal, signaling a new willingness to resolve patent disputes without resorting to the “thermonuclear war” stance favored by co-founder Steve Jobs.

Kristin Huguet, a spokeswoman for Cupertino, California-based Apple, declined to comment on Samsung’s filing.

The case is Apple Inc. v. Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd., 11-cv-01846, U.S. District Court, Northern District of California (San Jose).

To contact the reporter on this story: Joel Rosenblatt in San Francisco at jrosenblatt@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Michael Hytha at mhytha@bloomberg.net

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