Billions of dollars at stake for both companies

Apple and Samsung patent row heads to US court

After years of accusations, the two tech giants will battle out their patent disputes in a Californian court.

Both companies are accusing the other of patent violations, and there have already been disagreements over where each party should sit as both will be acting as plaintiff and defendant.

Apple is accusing Samsung of copying the iPhone’s design with its Galaxy range, the S2 in particular. Apple is asking for billions of dollars from Samsung in compensation, as the company believes the look-a-like dilutes the public’s perception of its range of i-devices.

Meanwhile Samsung is demanding royalties for five patents which it claims Apple has infringed. Two of these relate to 3G technology, the other three cover the integration of mobile phone, digital camera and email into a single device; bookmarking pictures in an image gallery; and using apps whilst continuing to listen to music in the background.

There’s no denying that the two handsets look similar, but Samsung is insisting that Apple was not the first to produce touch screen devices.

Together the two companies account for more than half of all the world’s smartphone sales. This will be one of the biggest trials of its kind, with billions of dollars at stake for both companies.

The trial is expected to last at least four weeks.

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