Apple and Samsung settle 7-year battle over smartphone design

The biggest patent battle of the modern technology world has finally come to an end after seven years.

Apple Inc. and Samsung Electronics Co. told a judge Wednesday they’d resolved the first filed but last remaining of the legal disputes that once spanned four continents. The string of lawsuits started in 2011 after Steve Jobs, Apple’s co-founder who died that year, threatened to go “thermonuclear” on rivals that used the Android operating system. The companies didn’t disclose the terms of the accord.

While the overall Smartphone Wars included every major maker of mobile devices, the fight between Apple and Samsung was the most intense. Apple accused Samsung of “slavishly” copying the iPhone design, while a Samsung lawyer once called Apple a “ jihadist.” The ensuing litigation cost each company hundreds of millions of dollars in legal fees, and tested their reputations as innovators.

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