Samsung Electronics on Tuesday dropped law suits aimed at banning sales of Apple’s iPad and iPhone in Europe due to infringement of Samsung’s patents. The company will continue to seek monetary compensation for its intellectual property, which is represented by select standard essential patents. According to patent experts, the European Commission has forced Samsung to drop the ban requests and avoid antitrust lawsuit.
"Samsung remains committed to licensing our technologies on fair, reasonable and non-discriminatory terms, and we strongly believe it is better when companies compete fairly in the marketplace, rather than in court," Samsung said in a statement.
Samsung dropped attempt to stop the sale of some Apple products in Germany, Britain, France, Italy and the Netherlands, which generally means in every country it sued Apple for infringing its standard essential patents (SEPs) by its products featuring iOS operating system. According to Foss Patents’ experts, the statement does not say that Samsung has dropped its SEP lawsuits. It is still going to seek monetary reward, which is the suitable remedy in connection with SEPs and, as such, does not raise antitrust issues, while sales bans do.
“There can be no doubt whatsoever that the European Commission was behind this. Samsung would never have done this voluntarily, especially not in jurisdictions such as Germany that do not rule out SEP-based injunctions at all. Nor are there signs of a partial or complete settlement (otherwise there would have been a joint announcement, with Apple also dropping some claims). The only plausible explanations for this unilateral withdrawal involve the European Commmission,” said Florian Mueller, an expert from Foss Patents.
On Monday, a judge in the U.S. rejected Apple’s request to ban sales of Galaxy and Galaxy Tab products in the country. The judge said that while Samsung have infringed some of Apple’s IP rights, violation of select patents did not automatically create consumer demand towards its products.