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PR Newswire's Business Technology Round-up, 12th November 2012

LONDON, November 12, 2012 /PRNewswire/ --

Cellcom Israel issues lawsuit update, religious social media potential analysed and Apple and HTC settle lawsuits

Cellcom Israel, one of Israel's biggest telecoms providers, has issued an update on a pending class action lawsuit against the company, revealing an increase in the amount of damages claimed by the plaintiffs.

The lawsuit concerns a network malfunction that took place on the 1st of December 2010, which left thousands of customers unable to use their mobile phones over a lengthy period of time. Several of the plaintiffs in the case have attempted to include a number of previously dismissed complaints against the network, including a claim for between NIS 350 and NIS 700 per customer, amounting to a total of NIS 61million.

A claim has also been filed for NIS1.182billion for non-monetary damages relating to a loss of business or time during the outage. Cellcom intends to challenge the amendments, which it believes do not comply with a prior procedural agreement. The case continues.

A new report has found that, despite more than 80% of US Catholics under the age of 30 having a social media account, only half are aware that the church has an official presence on a range of social networks.

The report is designed to indicate the opportunities for the Catholic church to reach out to millions of followers using online platforms, in light of the Pope's mission to engage with believers on the "digital continent".

Senior members of the clergy have long believed that social media presents an opportunity to spread the word of God to hundreds of millions of atheists, with millions of Catholic bloggers and social networkers ready to engage across multiple platforms. Online activity is not without its perils though, with certain commentators expressing concern over the lack of a centralised control system to verify or denounce "official" church sites and accounts.

Technology giants Apple and Taiwanese mobile phone manufacturer HTC have brought an end to a two year patent battle this week, with both companies agreeing to settle the lawsuits in return for a 10-year cross-licencing agreement. 

The original lawsuit concerned a number of alleged patent infringements by both sides, with Apple seeking to emulate its previous victory over Samsung in the US courts.

The decision to settle is in stark contrast to Apple's Samsung litigation, which shows no sign of abating after the two companies pledged to appeal respective rulings in the US and UK. Speaking after the settlement, Apple CEO Tim Cook expressed his delight at the outcome, adding that it leaves the company free to "continue focusing on product innovation". 

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