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Apple agrees to drop patent claims against Samsung

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Inc has agreed to withdraw patent claims against a new phone with a high-end display after Samsung said it was not offering to sell the product in the crucial US market.

Apple disclosed the agreement in a filing yesterday in US District Court in San Jose, California. Representatives for both Apple and Samsung declined to comment.

Last month Apple asked to add the and other Samsung products, including several tablet models, to its wide-ranging patent litigation against Samsung.

In response, Samsung said the Galaxy S III Mini was not available for sale in the United States and should not be included in the case.

Apple won a $1.05 billion verdict against Samsung earlier this year but has failed to secure a permanent sales ban against several, mostly older Samsung models. The patents Apple is asserting against the Galaxy S III Mini are separate from those that went to trial.

Samsung started selling the Mini in Europe in October to compete with Apple's iPhone 5. In its filing on Friday in US District Court, for the Northern District of California, Apple said its lawyers were able to purchase “multiple units” of the Mini from Amazon.com Inc’s US retail site and have them delivered in the United States.

But Samsung represented that it is not “making, using, selling, offering to sell or importing the Galaxy S III Mini in the United States.” Based on that, Apple said it agreed to withdraw its patent claims on the Mini, “so long as the current withdrawal will not prejudice Apple’s ability later to accuse the Galaxy S III Mini if the factual circumstances change.”

Apple loses another copyright suit in China
A Chinese court has fined Apple 1 million yuan ($160,400) for hosting third-party applications on its App Store that were selling pirated electronic books, the official Xinhua news agency reported on Friday.

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