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Cisco and Samsung strike patent agreement

The Associated Press

Cisco Systems Inc. and Samsung Electronics Ltd. said Wednesday that they have struck a patent cross-license agreement aimed at reducing the risk of potential legal disputes.

Under the arrangement, both companies gain access to the other's patent portfolios. This includes existing patents and those filed over the next 10 years. The financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.

Technology companies often use litigation to stop rivals from using patents without permission. But a number of companies have recently taken to creating patent agreements outside of court to help lower the risk of expensive legal battles and return their focus to creating new products.

Cisco and Google announced a similar deal between their two companies on Tuesday. Google reached an arrangement of its own with Samsung last month.

"Innovation is stifled all too often in today's overly-litigious environment," Dan Lang, Cisco's Vice President of Intellectual Property, said in a statement. "By cross-licensing our patent portfolios, Cisco and Samsung are taking important steps to reverse the trend and advance innovation and freedom of operation."