A Californian judge has ruled that Samsung infringed Apple's auto-correct text patent, ahead of an upcoming trial between the two companies.
Judge Lucy Koh also declared in the ruling that Samsung's multimedia synchronisation patent was invalid.
According to patent consultant Florian Mueller, these decisions "significantly" increase the likelihood of Apple emerging victorious in the multi-patent trial scheduled to begin in March.
The outcome is similar to that of a 2012 trial between the two companies, in which all of Samsung's summary judgement requests were denied.
"This time around the outcome is even better for Apple because it now holds an infringement finding in its hand and merely has to defend the validity of the autocomplete patent at the spring trial," said Mueller in a blogpost summarising the ruling.
If the trial finds that Samsung is indeed guilty of infringing the word recommendation patent, it may well have ramifications for other Android devices.
"We are disappointed by the court's decision, and look forward to the jury trial, when the jury is expected to consider the claims related to the remaining summary judgment requests that were denied," Samsung said in a statement.
"We remain confident that our products do not infringe Apple's intellectual property, and we will continue to take all appropriate measures to protect our intellectual property rights."
The upcoming trial will be the latest chapter in the ongoing patent-war saga between the two tech giants. In California alone they have already gone to trial twice in the last two years. Both cases have gone in favour of the California-based company.