The welcome news that Apple and Samsung have set aside their legal differences everywhere except the United States is surely the beginning of the end of a long, tedious saga.
The two have slugged it out ever since Samsung began making waves in the smartphone space, but now the Korean company is clearly being beaten down.
While there has been no licensing agreement, it's surley Apple that's the winner.
It has won huge damages in the States and, most importantly, its sales and profits remain buoyant.
On the other hand, Samsung is in a state of disarray.
It can’t bring itself to give up its tussle with Apple in the U.S. while Cupertino will doubtless be pushing for fees via licence agreements across The Pond.
Its profits slipped by 20% in the last reported quarter, its global smartphone share is down by 7% according to IDC.
And to add insult to injury, Xiaomi in China and Micromax in India are outstripping it in terms of sales in what are now critical markets.
This dire news means it’s now imperative for Samsung to get around the table with Apple and discuss terms.
There is simply no point in continuing when it’s been comprehensively proven that it was in breach of Apple patents.
By keeping up a combative stance, all Samsung is doing is damaging itself in the eyes of core consumers and, as results show, harming its business too.
Basically, the focus needs to be back on phones, not on courtroom battles.
The end of 2014 is going to be make-or-break for Samsung now.
The Galaxy Note 4 has got a concrete release date, but it’s going to have to go toe–to–toe with the most in–demand iPhone ever, plus new rivals in developing markets.
Trying to stem the tide of Apple’s legal advance isn’t going to solve anything.
By tacking the legal monkey on its back with a final payment or royalty agreement covering older devices, Samsung can look to the future and hope that it sees an upturn in 2015.
Samsung hasn’t lost its ability to make quality products. Far from it.
The Galaxy Alpha and Note 4 are full of promise, but they’re being forgotten in the morass of iPhone rumours and conjecture about when this lengthy courtroom drama will finally draw to a close.
There is no chance of Apple going to Samsung with an olive branch. It’s too far ahead of the game to think that’s a good idea.
If Samsung wants to bring this all to a successful conclusion and resume the fight over innovation and technical development, it must dig deep and find a way to finish this in tidy fashion.