Samsung ties up patent agreements with Ericsson, Google

Samsung ties up patent agreements with Ericsson, Google

27 JAN 2014

Samsung reached patent licensing agreements with both Ericsson and Google, with the former deal ending a series of legal disputes between the companies.

The “multi-year” settlement with Ericsson covers global cross licensing of patents related to GSM, UMTS, and LTE standards for networks and handsets and ends all ongoing legal disputes related to patents between the companies.

The agreement includes an initial payment and ongoing royalty payments from Samsung to the Swedish infrastructure vendor for the term of the license agreement. The initial payment will impact Ericsson’s Q4 2013 sales by SEK4.2 billion ($651.6 million) and boost net income by SEK3.3 billion.

Both Ericsson and Samsung have previously filed complaints against each other with the US International Trade Commission, along with suits in the US District Court for the Eastern District of Texas.

“We are pleased that we could reach a mutually fair and reasonable agreement with Samsung. We always viewed litigation as a last resort,” said Kasim Alfalahi, chief intellectual property officer at Ericsson.

Ericsson said in a statement that the agreement shows its commitment to fair, reasonable and non-discriminatory (FRAND) principles for the benefit of the industry.

In contrast to the Ericsson deal, the global patent license agreement Samsung signed with Google is part of a long-term cooperative partnership between the companies.

The mutually beneficial global patent cross-license agreement covers “a broad range of technologies and business areas”. It covers existing patents and those filed over the next 10 years.

“By working together on agreements like this, companies can reduce the potential for litigation and focus instead on innovation,” said Allen Lo, deputy general counsel for patents at Google.

The two companies will gain access to each other’s patent portfolios with the aim of achieving deeper research and development collaboration on current and future technologies.

In November last year, Samsung extended a patent licence agreement with Nokia that was due to expire at the end of 2013. Nokia started to receive additional compensation from Samsung for use of its patents from 1 January.

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Tim Ferguson

Tim joined Mobile World Live in August 2011 and works across all channels, with a particular focus on apps. He came to the GSMA with five years of tech journalism experience, having started his career as a reporter... More

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