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Wednesday, April 04, 2012, 08:29 pm PT (11:29 pm ET)

Claim construction tilts toward Apple in US patent lawsuit against Samsung

Apple has won favorable terms in defining terms during claim construction for the company's original lawsuit accusing Samsung of infringing on its intellectual property.

Out of eight total terms, Judge Lucy Koh adopted five definitions from Apple and just two from Samsung, MacNN reports. She accepted a hybrid definition for the final term, "applet."

"Claim construction is often vital to a patent lawsuit, as it both frames the argument for either side's attorneys along with setting the terms by which a judge can rule on whether or not a technology is violating a patent," the report read.

Though favorable definitions by no means guarantee Apple a win in the case, they're expected to increase its chances of a ruling in its favor.

Last December, Judge Koh denied Apple's request for a preliminary injunction on certain models of Samsung's Galaxy line of mobile devices. At the time, Koh suggested that it was likely Samsung would be found to have infringed on at least one of Apple's patents, but she didn't find sufficient cause to grant an injunction.

Apple first sued Samsung last April, accusing the South Korean company of copying its iPhone and iPad products. The suit has since expanded to include eight of Apple's patents, targeting 17 of Samsung's products.

Court records show that Apple contacted Samsung in 2010 to voice its concerns over the alleged infringement. Apple's attorneys have even revealed that late co-founder Steve Jobs got involved with the issue.

Both companies are reportedly tentatively discussing a settlement. People familiar with the matter told Bloomberg late last month that top-level executives at Apple and Samsung have "communicated lately about potential settlement options."