Samsung, Apple CEOs to talk patent dispute
Samsung Electronics chief executive Choi Gee-sung left for the United States Sunday where he plans to meet Apple CEO Tim Cook to attempt to resolve a widening patent row between the two technology giants.
Choi, accompanied by Shin Jong-kyun, head of Samsung’s mobile devices division, is scheduled to meet Cook at a court in San Francisco Monday to engage in two days of discussions as the companies seek to navigate out of their complicated intellectual property dispute over smartphones and touch-screen tablets.
The relationship between the two companies have been eroding since April last year when Apple filed a lawsuit against Samsung for ``slavishly copying’’ the look and feel of iPhones and iPads in promoting
Samsung countered with a slew of lawsuits claiming that Apple was infringing on its wireless patents and the feud has since spread to courts around the world. Samsung’s dual strength in finished products and parts, however, adds an odd dimension to the fight as Apple remains one of its biggest buyers of memory chips and liquid crystal display screens.
Talking to reporters before his departure, Shin hinted that Samsung has no intentions of backing down from what has become the technology sector’s most-watched battle of egos.
``Apple recently called us a copycat, which is preposterous,” Shin said.
``We recently received a design award (for our mobile devices) and prepared this design from a long time ago, and therefore have no reason to be called a copycat.”
Choi declined to speak to reporters.
The two firms have trimmed the number of patents under dispute by half in a court filing earlier this month under the order of Northern District of California Court’s Judge Lucy Koh. Apple has sued Samsung for copyright infringement on designs, while Samsung in turn is asking for royalties against Apple for using its wireless transmission technology.
``As it is a legal procedure, we can only know the direction once we meet for the talk,” said Shin.
``The numbers are not important in how much royalties we seek to get paid.’’
In talking with Cook and other Apple executives, Shin said Samsung has ``prepared a lot’’ and is ready to take the talks in several directions, including cross licensing.
Shin also addressed the current shortage of the Snapdragon mobile chip by Qualcomm, which are used in the more advanced mobile Internet devices.
``Qualcomm’s mobile chip set Snapdragon is suffering from a huge inadequacy in supply,’’ he said. ``It seems that the chip deficiency will last until the fourth quarter. Some of the new products of Samsung Electronics will be pushed back because of this.’’