Korean giant Samsung has filed papers at a US court claiming that Apple’s latest iPad mini, released this month, infringes eight technology patents.
Samsung has asked a judge to add the 7.9-inch Apple tablet to a list of products, including the iPod Touch 5, and the iPad 4, which it claims violate patents on radio signaling technologies.
A patent war has engulfed technology giants with firms trying to make sure the others’ latest products are involved in the legal dispute in a bid get sales banned.
Apple and Samsung have filed cases against each other in more than 10 countries, each accusing the other of violating its patents.
Last week Apple successfully applied to add Google’s latest mobile operating system, Android 4.2, Jelly Bean, to the case.
In a minor victory for Samsung, on Wednesday, the judge ordered Apple to disclose the financial details of its patent licensing deal with HTC.
Apple and HTC signed a 10-year license agreement earlier this month, but did not make the details public.
But the court ordered Apple to produce a full copy of the settlement agreement “without delay”, subject to an “attorneys’ eyes only” designation, meaning it will not be made public.
Legal experts say the question of which patents are covered by the HTC settlement, and licensing details, could be instrumental in Samsung’s efforts to thwart Apple’s subsequent quest for a permanent sales ban on its products.
Samsung has argued it is “almost certain” that the HTC deal covers some of the same patents involved in its own litigation with Apple.
It seeks to show Apple is willing to license its technology if the price is right.
It has been speculated that HTC has agreed to pay Apple a royalty of up to $8 on each smartphone it sells, but the figure has been flatly denied by the firm’s chief executive.
The settlement of Apple and HTC ended their worldwide litigation and brought to a close one of the first major flare-ups in the global smartphone patent wars.
Apple first sued HTC in 2010, setting in motion a legal conflagration that has since circled the globe and engulfed the biggest names in mobile technology.