On Friday, telecom equipment makers Ericsson and ZTE announced that they signed a global cross-licensing agreement and have agreed to drop all litigation on the matter. In April of last year, Ericsson filed lawsuits in Germany, UK and Italy against ZTE for infringing on several Ericsson patents related to GSM and 3G/UMTS cellular technology. ZTE countered with its own lawsuit against Ericsson in China for infringing on server patents related to GSM and LTE technologies.
Both companies have now announced that a royalty bearing cross-licensing agreement has been signed that complies with Fair, Reasonable and Non- Discriminatory (FRAND) royalty compensation. Under the agreement ZTE has agreed to pay Ericsson royalties for parts of the company’s patent portfolio. Financial terms of the agreement were not disclosed.
This is just one of many patent infringement lawsuits that have been filed over the last year. Samsung and Apple are also in a patent battle spanning more than ten countries over smartphone and tablet patent technology. On Friday, it was announced by a German court that Samsung had lost its patent battle to Apple over UMTS/3G technology found in the Apple iPhone. Many more patent infringement cases between the two companies are still ongoing.
Last month, British Telecom filed suit against Google in the United States over patent infringements involving six patents in services such as Google’s Android platform, Google Maps and Google Music.