Samsung, Apple agree to drop all patent lawsuits outside US

Brent Lewin | Bloomberg | Getty Images

Samsung Electronics and Apple have agreed to drop all patent lawsuits outside of the United States, a Samsung spokesperson said on Wednesday.

This agreement covers eight countries: South Korea, Japan, Australia, the Netherlands, Germany, France, Italy and the United Kingdom.

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Both companies will continue to push ahead with U.S. cases, however.

"This agreement does not involve any licensing arrangements, and the companies are continuing to pursue the existing cases in U.S. courts," Samsung said in a statement.

Is Samsung losing steam?
Is Samsung losing steam?   

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The latest development marks easing tensions between the two tech giants which have been locked in bitter smartphone wars.

Their dispute started in 2011, when Apple first sued Samsung in the U.S. for copying features of the iPhone. Samsung then sued Apple for patent infringement in South Korea, Japan, Australia, the Netherlands, Germany, France, Italy and the U.K. Apple then filed countersuits in five of those countries.

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In the ongoing U.S. dispute, Apple has won two jury verdicts in May which found Samsung had copied features of the iPhone with damages totaling more $1 billion. Samsung has said it would appeal both decisions.

Apple has so far been awarded just $119 million in damages, far short of the $2.2 billion it's seeking.

Samsung shares were down 1.1 percent Wednesday against a 0.4 percent drop in the wider market.