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HTC and Apple Settle Patent Dispute, Reach 10-Year License Agreement

As of this weekend, we no longer (well, for 10 years) have to write about Apple and HTC fighting in courts over patents. According to press releases posted by both companies yesterday, the two have reached a global settlement that includes the dismissal of all current lawsuits and a 10-year license agreement. This agreement extends to current and future patents. The terms have been kept confidential.

CEOs from both companies made brief statements, admitting that they are pleased to have resolved their dispute. Both also mentioned “innovation” as something they are looking forward to.

I don’t really have a lot of thoughts to add other than, “It’s about damn time.” HTC is struggling and can’t continue to fight in courts against someone as big and powerful as Apple. With this out of the way, they can get back to building great products and trying to turn down times around. 

HTC and Apple settle patent dispute

All Patent Litigation Between The Companies Dismissed

TAIPEI and CUPERTINO, California – November 11, 2012– HTC and Apple have reached a global settlement that includes the dismissal of all current lawsuits and a ten-year license agreement. The license extends to current and future patents held by both parties. The terms of the settlement are confidential.

“HTC is pleased to have resolved its dispute with Apple, so HTC can focus on innovation instead of litigation.” said Peter Chou, CEO of HTC.

“We are glad to have reached a settlement with HTC.” said Tim Cook, CEO of Apple. “We will continue to stay laser focused on product innovation.”

  • If the rumors are true, and HTC agreed to pay CrApple $X.00/phone sold, as a community we need to STOP buying HTC phones to make a statement. We will not support giving money to Apple that they don’t deserve. Shame on HTC.

  • overclock

    Think of all the money both companies would have savied if they would have only done this in the first place!
    And as for Apple staying laser focused on innovation what about the last 3 have been innovation rather than simple evolution? The mini ipad is worse than an original Kindle Fire.

  • RobV

    $6-$8 a phone. Poor HTC

    • As if I needed another reason never to purchase an HTC phone again.

  • PetiePal

    What is wrong with these guys…just release white and black in the US to start…and THEN worry about other colors. ::sigh:: Who wants a brown phone?

    • 1bens

      Consider it their version of the brown zune.

  • SexciiP

    What patents were they fighting over?

    • Danrarbc

      Slide to unlock and creating links to touch from phone numbers and emails 😐

      A bit more, but that’s the jist.

  • Finire

    I’d like to know more about what each company had to give in this…

  • JulianZHuang

    HTC are not earning money from their android devices now. no money, no war. surrender now will at least help them save some cash.

  • In bed with the enemy.

  • ericsorensen

    I’m really curious what the terms are. My guess is HTC will be paying Apple a dollar amount for each phone sold.

  • WickedToby741

    You have to wonder what’s in this deal. It would be reassuring to know that HTC didn’t agree to do something like delayed updates or to not update Android devices period, but I wouldn’t put it past Apple.

    • flosserelli

      HTC probably agreed to become Apple’s bitch. Apple will get a sizable chunk of change for every HTC device sold. I can’t imagine Apple agreeing to anything less.

  • RichFromBX

    This should allow for some interesting devices and features now that these companies don’t really need to worry about being sued…

    On some level you would have to think that this is a way for Apple to screw Samsung…

    • richard melcher

      how so? All this means is that if HTC wants to make a tablet with rounded corners apple is willing to licence it.

      I can already see what will happen; HTC will make a new android device, Apple will pull some retarded patent out of there butt and demand $30 per phone, HTC will claim Apple’s patent is ridiculous and Apple will sue if HTC tries to sell it.

  • 4n1m4L

    I can’t help but feel the similarity between these patent wars and organized crime. “You got to cut me in if you wanna do business on my turf.” And that a lawsuit is the equivalent of a mafia hit.

    • Everything is an organized crime. Bankers, government, FED, police…..everything.

      • 1bens

        Amen brotha!

  • master94

    Woo, no more HTC being sued for using round corners

    • As I recall, the patents used against were software patents, not hardware. Virtually all the hardware design complaints have been levelled against Samsung (which, let’s face it, was pretty blatant during at least the original Galaxy S era).

  • Sully

    Lets get those OTA updates rolling with the ability to tap on certain things to do certain things which apple used to delay some HTC phones.

  • moew

    HTC has been bleeding lately, this is a capital expense that might be huge.

    They have to have some good stuff in the pipeline AND they have to have carriers giving them a speedy approval process.

    Too bad the deal is sealed (confidential), I would have loved to have analyzed it.

  • chris125

    Good less money HTC has to spend on lawyers and can use on product development. Hopefully they will be able to add back the things they removed in software updates because of apple’s patents

  • Could this mean that Apple and HTC might be planning to team up in the future?

    • sarcasm

      Clearly this means Apple and Google are going to team up.

      • flosserelli


  • Could this mean that apple and HTC might be planning to team up?

    • Emilio Fahr

      I really don;t think Apple is one of those companies that play well with others.

    • RedskinsNation

      iPhone Thnundstorm Lighening XX

      • lol… wait a minute, HTC did have the “Thunderbolt” first!

  • Jason Bittner

    Good, now where is my thunderbolt ICS update?

    • Chris

      Ya and the Incredible 2 ICS update.

    • JetBlue

      Least you’re getting an ICS update. The LG Revolution got screwed over and isn’t getting it through custom ROM or official where as the Thunderbolt has it through custom ROM.

      • Chris

        There is no way to tell if we are getting it or not, they will not tell us anything other than the BS script they have been spouting for the last 3-4 months.

    • yarrellray

      This is the perfect example WHY SAMSUNG IS ANDROID. It’s pitiful that Htc would settle or pay anything just shameful. Don’t worry about Samsung settling cause they don’t fear apple.

  • JetBlue

    Now HTC needs to move to ASOP for their next flagship phone and have amazing specs then they might turn around.

    • carlisimo

      No thanks. Sense may have some aesthetic touches that remind me of feature phones, but it also has some advantages. Some are subjective; I like Sense’s use of labels (like for copy, paste, speakerphone, etc.) whereas Google has been phasing them out by using icons that aren’t always obvious. I also prefer Sense’s camera app. Other things are objectively better, like Sense’s native support for being able to switch between the English keyboard and Chinese handwriting. That was, without exaggerating, a dealbreaker for me on stock Android, sadly.

      • Matt P

        Agreed! AND you can send email to your Gmail group contacts, and send/reply to group texts. You cannot do this for some reason on AOSP. Why, I’ll never understand.

      • brando56894

        I had two HTC phones (Incredible and Rezound, just switched to the Gnex) and I must admit that I have a love/hate relationship with Sense. I loved the way it themed all of the stock apps and loved the way the notification shade looked (notification pane and a separate quick settings pane) but I absolutely hated the stock launcher (rosie) and always immediately replaced it with another third party launcher. The other problem I had with Sense 1/2/3/3.5 was that it was extremely bloated, and whenever I would run a rom I would always go for a sense-less version or at least a debloated version. Sense 4 did change this and remove the bloat but I had only tried early ports of Sense 4 on the Rezound but they weren;t really that stable.

      • agreed about the labels. minimalism is great and all, but a lot of the icons aren’t obvious. fyi though, you can often hold down on an icon to have it show you the label.