Ericsson lawsuit bars Chinese phone maker from India

Ericsson lawsuit bars Chinese phone maker from India


Chinese electronics company Xiaomi has been temporarily barred from selling goods in India’s smart phone market following a patent dispute with telecoms business Ericsson.

The Delhi High Court halted any sales of Xiaomi smart phones in India until February next year, following a complaint by Swedish company Ericsson, which claimed Xiaomi infringed eight of its patents.

Ericsson had asked Xiaomi to obtain a licence to the patents after claiming the Chinese company’s products infringed patents it owns for the Adaptive Multi Rate, 3G and EDGE technologies.

The Swedish company reportedly wanted a licence before Xiaomi attempted to break into India's smart phone market, but Xiaomi launched its products in the country in July this year.

At issue are standard-essential patents, which have to be licensed on fair, reasonable and non-discriminatory (FRAND) terms.

The order will be in effect until a hearing begins in February, following the Delhi High Court’s decision on December 8.

A Xiaomi spokesman did not respond immediately to a request for comment.

But, Higo Barra, the company’s global vice president, confirmed the sales ban in a Facebook letter.

"As a law abiding company, we are investigating the matter carefully and assessing our legal options," he added.

According to the SpicyIP blog, one factor that could have led to the court’s decision was an alleged lack of response by Xiaomi to Ericsson’s communications, totalling six since July this year.

From selling its first smart phone in 2011, Xiaomi has become the world’s third largest smart phone manufacturer according to research firms Strategy Analytics and IDC.

In a statement, Ericsson said: “Xiaomi continues to refuse to respond in any way regarding a fair licence to Ericsson’s IP on FRAND terms. Ericsson, as a last resort, had to take legal action.” 

(Source: WIPR)

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