Ericsson Sues Samsung over Royalties

Swedish telecommunications equipment manufacturer Telefon AB LM Ericsson said it has filed a lawsuit in four countries against Samsung Electronics. The move follows the inability of the parties to reach an agreement on royalty payments for the use of patents.

Sony Ericsson, a joint venture of Ericsson and Sony, has joined Ericsson in the lawsuit.

Ericsson’s agreement with Samsung over royalty payments expired at the end of 2005.

“We have negotiated but have not been able to reach a new agreement. We regret we have had to take this step,” said Ericsson spokeswoman Aase Lindskog.

Lindskog said Ericsson has patents essential for Samsung, but Samsung’s patents aren’t essential for Ericsson.

“We have invested significant amounts in research and development and want to get a return on those investments,” Lindskog added.

The patents under dispute concern Global System for Mobile communications, or GSM, General Packet Radio Service, or GPRS, and Enhanced Data rates for Global Evolution, or EDGE. The lawsuit was filed in the U.S., the U.K., Germany and the Netherlands.