Apple and Ericsson Settle Patent Dispute, Will Collaborate on 5G

by Istvan Fekete on December 22, 2015

ericsson.logoEricsson and Apple have announced they have reached an agreement bringing an end to pending lawsuits in different courts in Europe and the US. The dispute dates back to 2012 when a licencing agreement between the two parties expired and Apple argued that the royalties it was paying to Ericsson should have been based on the value of the chips inside iPhones and iPads, whereas Ericsson claimed the “end prices of entire LTE devices” should determine royalty amounts.

Following Apple’s lawsuit filing in January that year, Ericsson countersued and escalated the issue by filing seven lawsuits in the US District Court for the Eastern District of Texas and also two complaints with the International Trade Commission seeking to block Apple products from the US market. Ericsson also filed suits in Germany, the Netherlands, and the UK.

While the specific terms of the contract are confidential, the agreement pushed up overall revenue from intellectual property rights in 2015 to between $1.5 billion and $1.6 billion, Ericsson estimated. What the companies did disclose were the terms of the new contract: It’s a seven-year agreement that kicks off with an initial payment to Ericsson and, thereafter, on-going royalties from Apple.

“We are pleased with this new agreement with Apple, which clears the way for both companies to continue to focus on bringing new technology to the global market, and opens up for more joint business opportunities in the future,” said Kasim Alfalahi, Chief Intellectual Property Officer at Ericsson.

Furthermore, the two tech giants agreed to collaborate in multiple technology areas, including the development of the next-generation 5G standards, the optimization of existing wireless networks for the benefit of operators and users worldwide, and video traffic optimization.

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Written by: Istvan Fekete. www.digitcom.ca. Follow TheTelecomBlog.com by: RSS, Twitter, Facebook, or YouTube.

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