Featured Articles

Hands on: Nvidia Shield Tablet with Android 5.0

Hands on: Nvidia Shield Tablet with Android 5.0

We broke the news of Nvidia's ambitious gaming tablet plans back in May and now the Shield tablet got a bit…

More...
Nokia N1 Android tablet ships in Q1 2015

Nokia N1 Android tablet ships in Q1 2015

Nokia has announced its first Android tablet and when we say Nokia, we don’t mean Microsoft. The Nokia N1 was designed…

More...
Marvell launches octa-core 64-bit PXA1936

Marvell launches octa-core 64-bit PXA1936

Marvell is better known for its storage controllers, but the company doesn’t want to give up on the smartphone and…

More...
TSMC 16nm FinFET Plus in risk production

TSMC 16nm FinFET Plus in risk production

TSMC’s next generation 16nm process has reached an important milestone – 16nm FinFET Plus (16FF+) is now in risk production.

More...
Nvidia GTX 970 SLI tested

Nvidia GTX 970 SLI tested

Nvidia recently released two new graphics cards based on its latest Maxwell GPU architecture, with exceptional performance-per-watt. The Geforce GTX 970…

More...
Frontpage Slideshow | Copyright © 2006-2010 orks, a business unit of Nuevvo Webware Ltd.
Tuesday, 24 July 2012 12:45

Google calls in favours in the Senate

Written by Nick Farrell



Ructions in Europe warn lawyers


Google appeals US Senate Judiciary Committee in a bid to get a number of Apple’s iPhone patents considered as industry standards and made available to all.

Legal firm Pinsent Masons has warned that if this succeeds it will have wider ramifications, particularly in Europe,. Deborah Bould, partner in Pinsent Masons’ IP practice and Natasha Pearman of Pinsent Masons’ competition practice have issued a report which said that while this case currently only affects the USA, the US Senate Judiciary Committee is trying to decide whether companies with standards essential patents should be prevented from getting an injunction against infringers.

If this happesn then there is nothing to stop the European Commission widening its ongoing investigation of essential patents and their licensing by companies including Samsung and Motorola Mobility/Google to cover de facto standards along similar lines.

Indeed, Joaquín Almunia Vice President of the European Commission, who is responsible for Competition Policy has stated that he is “determined to use antitrust enforcement to prevent the misuse of patent rights to the detriment of a vigorous and accessible market”, the report noted.

They think it is likely that the Commission would take a similar approach to that adopted in the Microsoft interoperability cases, where a refusal to supply interoperability information to competitors was considered to be an abuse of dominance. It will be difficult for the  Commission to prove there was no reasonable alternative to the de facto standard and that the patent holder had a dominant position; which is not a straightforward analysis.

“However, we believe that the Commission is looking to get its teeth into these complex issues and start to set a precedent for the future that competition and IP should be directed at increasing innovation and not merely awarding or protecting IP rights” the report said.

This is particularly the case where there is little merit or innovation and where these are likely to be detrimental to consumers. Overall, this could open up another avenue in the ongoing IP battles that we are seeing in Europe, they said.

Nick Farrell

E-mail: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
blog comments powered by Disqus

 

Facebook activity

Latest Commented Articles

Recent Comments