Apple and Samsung have agreed to end patent disputes being waged in countries other than the U.S. The two companies will remain locked in legal combat over U.S.-based patent litigation, however.

Countries that will now see their lawyer communities kicked off the lawsuit gravy train include Australia, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the Netherlands, South Korea, Spain and the United Kingdom.

The companies issued a joint statement claiming, "Apple and Samsung have agreed to drop all litigation between the two companies outside the U.S. This agreement does not involve any licensing agreements, and the companies are continuing to pursue the existing cases in U.S. courts."

There are many assumed reasons for the de-escalation of these wars; lawsuits are expensive, for starters, and apparently the financial reward of winning some of these non-U.S. battles did not justify the costs in fighting them.

The U.S. litigation is far more potentially impactful, monetarily and legally, and both companies would like to dedicate more resources to fighting them, or at least hasten their conclusion.

Samsung, which has already lost a couple of court battles with Apple and is currently appealing one award of $930 million in damages, would like to stop the bleeding, especially in light of its just-release second quarter earnings report, which did not go well as both sales and profit dropped.

Samsung would also like to free up resources to fight a giant market share battle it is experiencing in China, the world's biggest smartphone market. Chinese maker Xiaomi has come from nowhere in the past two years to surpass Samsung as the market leader in China by offering comparable features and quality at about half the cost of Samsung phones.

While Apple is not as stressed over the emergence of formidable competition in the Asian market just yet, they too might find it more to their advantage to help Samsung hold back the Xiaomi threat, especially since Xiaomi has focused most of their form factor design on copying Apple's products as closely as possible.

Apple and Samsung are frenemies; they rely on each other for components and technology licensing and would have a difficult time moving forward without their current level of cooperation in certain areas.

In another move that may signal that the battle between the two companies is winding down, they agreed in June to drop their appeals of a patent-infringement case that placed a ban on some older Samsung phones.

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