The CEOs of Apple and Samsung are to meet face to face, along with their lawyers, in a bid to find a peaceful resolution to the companies’ ongoing patent battles.
However, as pointed out by patent blogger Florian Mueller, just because the two have agreed to meet doesn’t mean a settlement is guaranteed, or even likely.
The main reason the meeting is taking place is because a judge presiding over two Apple-Samsung lawsuits in California ordered the parties to comment on their availability for a meeting, and each had to make an offer in order not to be seen as being uncooperative.
"If only one of them had made the CEO available, the other one would have appeared to be less than constructive,” Mueller writes.
"The courts can obligate parties to meet and talk, but they can’t force them to settle. That’s why firm trial dates generally have a much stronger effect on the willingness of litigants to settle than court-ordered negotiations.”
The meeting will take place in a San Francisco courthouse in the next 90 days.
Update: The date has been set for the meeting between Apple CEO Tim Cook and his counterpart at Samsung, Gee-Sung Choi.
The two-day meeting, a court-ordered attempt to reconcile the companies’ disagreements over patents, will take place in Apple’s home town of San Francisco on May 21 and 22.
Both parties have also been asked to provide ‘a candid evaluation’ of their chances in court, although patent commentator Florian Mueller has called this request ‘wishful thinking’.
"The parties won’t really say that any of their claims are legally weak,” Mueller says, "no matter in front of whom these talks take place.”