posted by Thom Holwerda on Mon 20th Oct 2008 22:34 UTC
IconThe legal battle between Macintosh clone maker PsyStar and Apple is still being waged, but it appears that the two companies are going to do what some of us had already predicted: settle the whole thing out of court.

Let's take a little trip back in time and walk through the various points of interest along the way. Back in April this year, an unknown company called PsyStar offered on its website a regular x86, which they called the OpenMac - quickly renamed to OpenComputer - for USD 400, which came with Mac OS X Leopard pre-installed. Doubts soon arose over the company's legitimacy, but it turned out those concerns were unfounded, as OpenComputers were soon enough finding their ways to customers - and reviewers. Now that the company was real, everyone more or less assumed Apple would soon sue. And they did.

Apple sued PsyStar in July of this year, claiming copyright infringement and licensing and trademark violations. Psystar was filled with confidence, and hired a prestigious law firm to take on Apple. They also countersued Apple claiming anti-competitive behaviour. Cupertino wasn't impressed.

As it appears, the two companies have now agreed to enter a voluntary stage of trying to find out if it's possible to settle this case out-of-court. The fun thing here is - and this will appeal to Apple - the possible outcome of these negotiations can be kept a secret. Since Apple cannot allow PsyStar to continue to sell the Mac clone, the only acceptable outcome for Apple seems to be to end sales of the OpenComputer. In other words, a big sack of money has been put aside at Infinite Loop, ready to be shipped to PsyStar's building. Coincidentally, these out-of-court negotiations are a lot cheaper for the small PsyStar. Everybody wins!

Except PsyStar customers, of course.

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