Very interesting trial started last Monday at the High Court in London. This is the FRAND trial part of the patent litigation case between Unwired Planet, a patent assertion entity (PAE) that bought standard-essential patents (SEPs) from Ericsson, and Huawei, a large manufacturer of smartphones and telecommunications infrastructure.
Mr Justice Colin Birss will have to deal with a range of very interesting issues, including whether Unwired Planet:
- holds a dominant position on one or several markets and thus whether Article 102 TFEU applies.
- illegally started injunction proceedings without complying with the licensing framework set out in the European Court of Justice in its 2015 Huawei/ZTE judgment.
- illegally required that Unwired Planet to license its SEP portfolio on a global scale.
In addition, Mr Justice Colin Birss will have to determine whether the royalties asked by Unwired Planet are FRAND.
Google and Samsung settled with Unwired Planet before the beginning of the trial.
If you are interested in the application of EU competition rules to PAEs, you may wish to have a look at my paper here.