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Samsung could make more concessions in EU patent case

BusinessNews
by Jamie Hinks
, 09 Dec 2013News
Samsung could make more concessions in EU patent case

Samsung could be asked to do more to settle a long running European Union patent dispute with competitors reportedly unhappy at the current resolution being proposed.

Feedback given by Samsung’s competitors is reported to have illustrated that other firms are far from happy at the South Korean’s firm’s settlement terms in relation to patent infringements against Apple and other companies.

"We will take account of the feedback when we discuss with Samsung possible improvements to their commitments in the coming weeks," EU competition commissioner Joaquin Almunia told Premier Cercle’s recent patent conference, according to Reuters.

The company had hoped that concessions it made in September would be enough to settle the case, which has been rattling on in the EU for some time. Some of the concessions it made included abandoning patent filings for the next five years as well as discussing licensing fees with rivals over a period of one year with a court or arbitrator deciding in the case of a disagreement.

Samsung’s decision to abandon patent filings for five years relates to mobile standard essential patents [SEPs] that cover technology used in both tablets and smartphones. It includes the Universal Mobile Telecommunications System [UMTS] standard that is critical to cellular 3G data and the H.264 video compression format used by YouTube, Blu-ray disks, and Adobe Flash Player.

The original investigation by the European Commission [EC] began back in January 2012 and it took them until the end of the same year to decide that Samsung could have breached Article 102 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the EU [TFEU] that prohibits abuse of a dominant position.

Samsung stands accused by the EU of using patent lawsuits to distort competition and if it can’t reach an agreement on concessions the fine will reportedly equal some $18.3 billion [£11.3 billion], according to an earlier report by the BBC.

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