Agreement ends current lawsuits; license covers current and future patents for 10 years

Apple and HTC this evening in a joint statement announced they've settled their patent dispute and have agreed to a 10-year license of current and future patents. 

Terms of the deal were not disclosed.

Here's the joint statement, released by HTC and Apple:

TAIPEI, Taiwan and CUPERTINO, California—November 10, 2012—HTC and Apple have reached a global settlement that includes the dismissal of all current lawsuits and a ten-year license agreement. The license extends to current and future patents held by both parties. The terms of the settlement are confidential.

“HTC is pleased to have resolved its dispute with Apple, so HTC can focus on innovation instead of litigation,” said Peter Chou, CEO of HTC. 

“We are glad to have reached a settlement with HTC,” said Tim Cook, CEO of Apple. “We will continue to stay laser focused on product innovation.” 

The licensing deal covers all of HTC's products, company spokesman Jeff Gordon told Android Central this evening, which includes Android as well as its current Windows Phone stable. Gordon also said that "we do not expect this license agreement to have an adverse material impact on the financials of the company."

The two companies this year became embroiled in a suit over the method links were displayed to the user, which ultimately led to a temporary ban on the HTC One X for AT&T and its Sprint counterpart, the HTC EVO 4G LTE. That took some of the wind of the sails for those two devices, at least in the smartphone world, even though the EVO 4G LTE only missed its scheduled launch date by a week, and the HTC One X never really disappeared from store shelves. 

The good news for end-users here is that the agreement, at least how it's described in the short statement, should keep HTC out of Apple's crosshairs for the next decade. That doesn't change the fact that HTC's still got some serious work ahead of it