Apple is Countersuing Ericsson in 5G Patent Dispute

Apple has countersued Ericsson just days after the Swedish firm filed a complaint against the Cupertino company.

Just days after Ericsson filed two lawsuits against Apple pertaining to the use of 2G, 3G, and 4G wireless technology, Apple has hit back with an ITC complaint against the company alleging a similar infringement, reads a new report from FOSS Patents.

Apple has filed a complaint to the US International Trade Commission. The document states:

Respondents recently filed a series of lawsuits and legal actions around the world,2 despite the pending Apple Inc. v. Telefonaktiebolaget LM Ericsson, No. 2:21-cv-00460-JRG 2 2 (E.D. Tex. Dec. 17, 2021) matter that provides a global resolution of the parties’ dispute, which apple was under the impression that Ericsson accepted. Respondents’ actions in the United States and around the world demonstrate that they do not want a Court setting fair, reasonable, and non-discriminatory (“FRAND”) terms for their patents. By way of such actions, Respondents are improperly using their purported standard essential patents (“SEPs”) and non-standard essential patents (“NEPs”) as ammunition through injunctions to coerce Apple to take an unfair, unreasonable, and discriminatory license to their purported SEPs. To the extent Respondents are willing to withdraw all of their lawsuits and legal actions, Apple is willing to do the same. However, if Respondents are not willing to agree to having the Texas court determine the FRAND terms for a cross license, Apple is forced to respond to Respondents’ infringement of Apple’s patents.

According to the report, Apple asserts that Ericsson infringes on three patents owned by Apple pertaining to mmWave technology used to power 5G in devices like the iPhone 12 and iPhone 13. Apple says that Ericsson uses the patents in mmWave antenna radio units and radio baseband units and their respective components. In the complaint, Apple asks for an immediate investigation into this unlawful importation and a ban on any infringing products.

Apple says that it is willing to withdraw its lawsuits (presumably pending) and legal actions if Ericsson does the same.

Just a few days ago, Apple was sued by Ericsson over claims the Cupertino company is using its patents for 2G, 3G, and 4G technology without permission.

In two separate suits filed January 17, Ericsson alleges that Apple is no longer allowed to license Ericsson’s patents pertaining to wireless connectivity in devices like the iPhone 13 and its other best iPhones, now that a 2015 deal has expired, explains a Reuters report.

As is often the case with patents considered essential to device functionality (such as the use of 2G, 3G, and 4G on a mobile device), Ericsson doesn’t want to stop Apple from using these technologies but is rather seeking compensation.