Samsung Electronics has told the European Commission that it’s prepared not to seek any legal injunctions on the basis of its standard-essential patents for mobile technology for the next five years. The deal would involve introducing a formal negotiation and arbitration scheme to cover licensing on FRAND terms (Fair, Reasonable and Non-Discriminatory) across Europe.
This proposal follows an EC investigation launched last January into Samsung’s dealing with Apple. Last December the Commission warned Samsung it could be breaching EU anti-trust rules that prohibit the abuse of a dominant position.
Comments from interested parties have been requested within the next few weeks.
Joaquín Almunia, Commission Vice President in charge of competition policy, said “I am looking forward to receiving the feedback of other market players on Samsung’s proposals. Enforcing patents through injunctions can be perfectly legitimate. However, when patents are standard-essential, abuses must be prevented so that standard-setting works properly and consumers do not have to suffer negative consequences from the so-called patent wars. If we reach a good solution in this case, it will bring clarity to the industry”.