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Apple and Samsung have been fined, after a South Korean court ruled that they had breached each other’s patents on mobile devices.

But a judge said that Samsung’s Galaxy smartphone did not violate Apple’s iPhone design.

The technology titans have also been hit with a ban on national sales of some of their products.

According to Jung Dong-Joon, a Seoul-based patent attorney, the litigation value of the lawsuit was around 70,000 euros, so the actual damage was not going to be big. However, he said an outright loss for Samsung would have affected its brand image.

The Seoul ruling comes ahead of more crucial verdicts in the US, where Apple is accusing Samsung of ripping off its iPhone and iPad technology in a multi-billion euro case.

As well as damages, Apple is demanding a permanent ban on Samsung selling patent-infringing products.

Samsung, meanwhile, wants compensation from Apple.

“Consumers could be the bigger loser here. They stand to lose in terms of the choices of products in the market, the choices of features they can look at and price,” said Robin Feldman, a law professor at the University of California.

“When companies spend this kind of money on global battles, they have less to spend on innovation and it’s always the consumer who loses when that happens.”

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