SEOUL, March 15 (Reuters) - Samsung Electronics Co said on Thursday a Dutch court rejected its 3G patent bid to ban sales of Apple's iPhone and iPad in the Netherlands.
But Samsung said the court ruled that it could seek damages over the use of Intel chips, giving the South Korean firm a partial victory in the latest skirmish between the world's biggest smartphone makers.
Samsung and Apple are locked in escalating global patent battle, as they jostle for the top position in the booming smartphone and tablet markets.
Apple first the fired salvo in April 2011, arguing Samsung had "slavishly" copied its iPad and iPhone and since then both have taken legal action against each other in several countries claiming patent infringements.
Samsung supplies mobile processors to power iPad and iPhone and counts Apple as its biggest customer.
The Hague court ruled on Wednesday that Samsung can not assert 3G patents against Apple products using Qualcomm's baseband chips, as Samsung has a licensing deal with the U.S. chipmaker.
But the court ruled that Samsung can proceed to claim such rights against products that use Intel chips, according to Samsung.
"(The) ruling by the Hague court provides Samsung with a legal basis to move forward with the protection of our patent rights," the South Korean firm said in a statement.
"Samsung has and will continue to stand ready to meet its obligations in licensing its technology on fair and reasonable terms."
The Dutch ruling comes as Apple returned to Samsung for the initial supply of touch-screen panels to make its latest iPad, which was unveiled last week and will hit store shelves on Friday, deepening their business ties, according to industry sources.
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