In a press statement released late yesterday, Apple and HTC announced the settlement of all their ongoing patent disputes. Additionally, the two companies will enter into a ten-year licensing deal.
The patent battle began in March 2010, when Apple filed lawsuits with the International Trade Commission and US District Court regarding 20 patents related to iOS. They alleged HTC was infringing on the iPhone's graphical user interface, and underlying hardware and software design.
The ongoing battle was ugly enough that Apple sought, but was ultimately denied, an injunction preventing HTC products from being sold in the U.S.
Full details of the settlement remain mostly private though the brief press release leads with the announcement of the ten-year license deal:
"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."
The release does note the agreement pertains to both current and any future lawsuits that means the two companies will be playing nice for the foreseeable future.
As for the licensing deal, we'll have to wait and see how the details of this arrangement will unfold.