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12/23/2009
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Samsung, Kodak Negotiate Patent Settlement

A proposed agreement calls for Samsung to deliver an undisclosed payment to Kodak, as well as a cross-licensing deal.

Samsung and Kodak have agreed to negotiate a settlement over digital camera patents issues which could include a cross-licensing deal, Kodak said Wednesday.

Kodak originally filed a claim with the U.S. International Trade Commission claiming Samsung was infringing on its digital camera patents. The company was seeking a limited exclusion order preventing Samsung from importing infringing devices such as mobile phones. A proposed agreement calls for Samsung to deliver a non-refundable undisclosed payment to Kodak, as well as cross-licensing deal.

"We are pleased to continue negotiations in the wake of the ITC determination, and we look forward to reaching a mutually beneficial arrangement that advances the interests of Kodak and Samsung while validating the strength of Kodak's intellectual property portfolio," said Laura Quatela, Kodak's chief intellectual property officer, in a statement.

As consumers trend toward convergence in their devices, a settlement could eventually lead to improved cameras in Samsung's mobile phones. The second-largest handset maker already produces a smartphone with an 8-megapixel camera, and picture-taking capabilities are taking on increasing importance as differentiators in the handset market.

Sony Ericsson is looking toward camera phones to help it boost its share in the U.S. market, and it has introduced an 8-megapixel cameraphone that can upload pictures to Flickr, Facebook, and other photo-sharing sites. Apple also touts the boosted camera of its iPhone 3GS, and this became an appealing factor of the touch-screen device. While it only packs a 3.2-megapixel lens, the iPhone 3GS can record video and has touch-to-focus capabilities.

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