Just days after Ericsson filed two separate lawsuits against Apple, the iPhone maker has hit back with a countersuit requesting for a U.S. import ban against Ericsson’s mobile base stations. The two companies appear to be in a never-ending tussle, with a flurry of lawsuits filed against each other since 2015.
Swedish telecom giant Ericsson recently filed lawsuits against Apple alleging that the iPhone maker isn’t legally allowed to continue using its patented 2G, 3G, and 4G technology in the iPhone 13 and other devices. Apple has now filed for a countersuit asking the United States International Trade Commission (ITC) to impose an import ban on Ericsson’s mobile infrastructure products.
Foss Patents reports that the countersuit alleges that the Swedish telecom company infringes on three patents owned by Apple related to mmWave technology that are used to power 5G in devices such as the iPhone 13.
These are the asserted patents, two of which are from the same family and all three of which are related to millimeter wave (mmWave) technology:
- S. Patent No. 9,882,282 on “wireless charging and communications systems with dual-frequency patch antennas”
- S. Patent No. 10,263,340 (same title, same family as ‘282 patent)
- S. Patent No. 9,667,290 on an “electronic device with millimeter wave antennas”
Interestingly, Apple has never accused Ericsson of infringing on these patents before. Foss Patents observes that Apple wants to pressure the telecom giant into withdrawing its lawsuits. The iPhone maker says in the complaint that it is willing to withdraw its lawsuits if Ericsson agrees to do the same.
What’s even more noteworthy is that Apple wants all the lawsuits to be resolved in the Eastern District of Texas, a jurisdiction that is known to favor patent holders. Florian Mueller from Foss Patents notes that the Cupertino-based company could be even more fearful of international courts such as Germany and “thinks it can get a better deal in the Eastern District of Texas.”[Via Foss Patents]