The Ericsson dispute concerns patented technology the Swedish firm says is essential to several telecommunications and networking standards used by Samsung's products as well as other patented inventions that are frequently implemented in wireless and consumer electronics products, the company said.
Samsung previously licensed Ericsson's patents in 2001 and renewed in 2007, but its license has now expired. Ericsson has extended an offer to Samsung to renew the license during negotiations that have lasted nearly two years. Ericsson claims that Samsung refused to renew its license to Ericsson's industry leading portfolio of telecommunications patents on the same ("FRAND") terms that its competitors had previously accepted.
FRAND licensing terms are used for patents and technologies that have become essential, often as an industry standard.
"Ericsson has over 30,000 patents and more than 100 license agreements with all major players in the industry. Ericsson has tried long and hard to amicably come to an agreement with Samsung and to sign a license agreement on FRAND terms. We have turned to litigation as a last resort," said Kasim Alfalahi, Chief Intellectual Property Officer at Ericsson.
Ericsson did not unveil the size of its lawsuit.