Apple settles patent dispute

(REUTERS) - No Christmas court time for Apple. It settled its year-long patent dispute with Ericsson. Apple reaching a broad, seven year license deal that covers everything from 2G to the latest 4G-LTE mobile technologies. Terms weren't disclosed, but analysts estimate Apple would have had to pay up to $750 million a year had it lost the suit.

With the deal, investment bank ABG Sundal Collier estimates Apple will fork over half per cent of its revenue on iPhones and iPads to Ericsson. Apple had no immediate comment.

Ericsson, the world's largest mobile network equipment maker, holds about 37,000 patents for mobile communications. In 2014, it struck a patent deal with Samsung that called for the Korean smartphone maker to pay $650 million and years of royalties. UBS estimates Apple will have to make a one-time payment of $420 million for unpaid royalties due after their first agreement had ended earlier this year.

Shares of Apple, which are down nearly 4 per cent this year, rose in early trading. Ericsson shares cutting back a chunk of its nearly 13 per cent loss this year in European trading.