July 2nd, 2012
09:50 AM GMT
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Just days after Apple won favorable back-to-back U.S. court rulings in its legal battle against Korean electronics maker Samsung, the technology giant reached a monetary settlement on Monday to end a long-running legal dispute with a China-based electronics firm.

The Guangdong high court in southern China said that through mediation, Apple agreed to pay Proview US$60 million over ownership of the iPad name in China. In its lawsuit, Proview alleged that it still owned the China rights after its iPad trademark was acquired by the Cupertino, California, company in 2009.

The settlement ends a potential legal complication to selling the popular iPad tablets in China, the second biggest market of Apple products after the United States.

Chinese official backs Proview in Apple dispute

Last year, thanks to the high demand for iPhones and iPads, Apple’s China revenue reached US$12.5 billion, comprising 11.5% of its global revenue.

"All parties involved have agreed on the settlement. Proview and Apple now no longer have a dispute over the iPad trademark," said Xie Xianghui, a lawyer for Proview Shenzhen, in quotes carried by China's state-run Xinhua news agency.

Apple also enjoyed better luck in its ongoing legal battles with Samsung over patent infringements in the U.S. On Friday, San Jose judge Lucy Koh granted Apple’s preliminary injunction request to block the sales of Samsung’s Galaxy Nexus smartphone. Three days earlier, Koh issued a similar ruling suspending sales of the Samsung tablet Galaxy Tab 10.1.

The South Korean electronics giant is appealing both injunctions.

Tech bloggers are warning about the repercussions of Apple’s favorable rulings. The prolonged court battle has  "enabled Apple critics to get behind Samsung, arguing the former is being too aggressive in its use of patents to stand up to competitors,” wrote Jonny Evans, an Apple blogger at Computerworld.

“In other words, the legal drama has done little to help Apple because it has given its enemies a chance to gather behind Samsung’s flag,” he said.

Samsung has revealed that it’s been working with Google, whose Android platform is used in the Galaxy line, to fight against Apple’s legal offensive, the Korea Times reported.

Google is also said to be supporting HTC, a Taiwan smartphone maker and a major Android player, which is also embroiled in a court dispute with Apple.

Apple fired the opening salvo of the legal fight in April 2011, when it launched a lawsuit accusing the South Korean company for “slavishly” copying the interface and design of iPhone and iPad in Galaxy smartphones and tablets. Samsung countersued, saying Apple has infringed a number of its wireless patents.

The multiple lawsuits between the two have been heard in the courts in the United States, Europe, Australia and Asia.

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Filed under: AppleTechnology


soundoff (24 Responses)
  1. dcayman

    Koreans couldn't invent their way out of a box...everything is copy this, copy that...but what do you expect with an education system and culture that crushes individuality?

    July 2, 2012 at 4:20 pm |
  2. china

    It is legal to get money from Apple.
    This is the standard of definition of "Smart".

    July 2, 2012 at 4:32 pm |
  3. Kyle H. Davis

    Why in the world did Apple bend over for that? Someone please tell me when a subsidiary is allowed to grant copyright to something that is owned by the parent company? They don't. This was just China trying to get out of something and trying to make a buck off of it. If I were Apple, I would have simply sued the subsidiary for fraud and tacked in the expected loss of revenue to the deal... then, when all was said and done, just pull a mainland China trick -

    Use the word "iPad" "iPhone", and just claim that it is a Spanish exclamation point and not the letter "i".

    July 2, 2012 at 4:34 pm |
  4. MythicalMe

    @dcayman that is just incredibly racist and also untrue. I think the South Koreans are very industrious and have a very vibrant culture.

    July 2, 2012 at 4:58 pm |
  5. Foolt

    I'd expect that from China, they are notorious for finding fault with everyone else...All the while killing babies, and threatening blind protesters and theyre families...Korea on the other hand doesnt need Apples money this just all seems silly.

    July 2, 2012 at 5:16 pm |
  6. Jeff

    60 mill to Apple is chump change.

    July 2, 2012 at 6:06 pm |
  7. Lewis Siqueiros

    Apple anyday lol. Guys might want to check out this new social network http://www.Formvote.com

    July 2, 2012 at 6:14 pm |
  8. anand

    Sucker.. unfortunately India is not as smart as China.. given's Apple success.. we should all be lining up saying we own the iPad name in India.. how easy is that..! Wake up India.. !!!

    July 2, 2012 at 6:18 pm |
  9. /lol

    I don't see why samsung dooesn't simply stop producing for apple, 80% of the hardware is made by them, just cut the supply and make their own tablet.
    btw, for all you apple fanboys, apple is losing in courts in other countries, the only reason why it is winning in the U.S. is because how corrupt the U.S. legal system is. It will be interesting to see apple only selling their tablets in certain countries as well as samsung.

    July 2, 2012 at 6:19 pm |
  10. anand

    please remember Apple will earn 60 million in the first three months ~(if not earlier) of being allowed to sell the iPad in China.. now that they own the iPad name in China ..if I was the owner of the iPad name in China.. my price tag for the iPad name would have been closer to 600 million..

    July 2, 2012 at 6:21 pm |
  11. anand

    every village in india , using every single language in india. says that the word "iPad" is reserved in their dialect and Apple will need to pay them to use it.... watch how fast the 100 billion apple cash hoard gets distributed to people who really need it .. cmon India you can do it. where are the real brains hiding..!!

    July 2, 2012 at 6:25 pm |
  12. anand

    enough of Apple bashing... the iPhone in my mind was a gift to humanity from Steve Jobs.. it was truly a labour of love.!

    July 2, 2012 at 6:26 pm |
  13. hachimada

    For your information, Proview (Shenzhen) registered IPAD trademark in September 2000, way earlier than any "I" products were launched. It's also common practice to own local trademark by local compampnies, so Proview (Shenzhen) was indeed rightful owner of the mark in China. Apple should have negotiated with Proview (Shenzhen) in the first place. They didn't, instead they choosed to talk to Proview Taiwan, in a hope to nail down a cheap deal. That didn't work, so they should pay the price. Given that China has huge market potentials, 60 million is still a good deal.

    July 2, 2012 at 7:16 pm |
  14. hachimada

    @Kyle Davis, your "Spanish exclamation" approach won't work, as two marks that are similar to the extent that consumers can not recognize the difference will be hold infringement. This is same in nearly all countries. BTW, a subsidiary can independently own IP rights, just check USPTO's database you will understand.

    July 2, 2012 at 7:27 pm |
  15. joe dough

    60M for a 4 letter word ... iSmart iMove

    July 2, 2012 at 7:33 pm |
  16. IPman

    iPwn, iSmack.

    July 2, 2012 at 8:20 pm |
  17. ONE CAREFUL OWNER

    One careful owner coming through!

    July 3, 2012 at 11:43 am |
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    July 4, 2012 at 12:15 pm |
  19. dust

    it didn't take too long for Apple to bend over... paying US$60million is nothing compared to 11.5% of revenue or US$1.4billion generated from the Chinese market last year alone, that's only about 4% of revenue spent from last year's sales.. Proview is happy... Apple can now start selling the new iPad in China and grow the revenue further... The Chinese government will be happily taxing the new iPad sales (at around 20% VAT a piece included in the final price to the consumers...)... everyone will be happy... Anand, iSupport your iDea for iNdia! Common, the "i" in the iPad, iPhone, iPod must have come from iNdia right??? :D

    July 5, 2012 at 4:12 am |
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    July 8, 2012 at 9:32 pm |
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    July 31, 2012 at 9:01 am |
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