Lawsuit From Ericsson Wants To Ban Apple From Importing iPhones, iPads

Another day, another lawsuit against Apple: This time around, the company’s facing a lawsuit from Ericsson that seeks to ban imports on all iPads and iPhones amidst a dispute about licensing fees for several patents.

Fresh off the heels of another lawsuit this week that found a jury ordering Apple to pay $532 million to another company, Apple is squaring off against telecom manufacturer Ericsson, after the Swedish company accused it of infringing on 41 of its patents that are used in iPhones and iPads, reports the New York Times’ Bits Blog.

One of the patents involved includes technology related to Long Term Evolution, known as LTE, which is the latest high-speed wireless technology used for transmitting data between cellular networks and mobile devices.

The two sides sued each other over Apple’s use of some of those patents last month, with Apple claiming that Ericsson was demanding too much money to license the technologies, and Ericsson saying in a separate suit that Apple was using its patents even after a license that gave it permission to do so expired in January.

Now Ericsson is adding two more complaints against Apple with the United States International Trade Commission seeking to block Apple mobile devices from coming into the U.S. until the patent issue is cleared up. It also filed separate lawsuits with the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Texas involving what Ericsson claims is Apple’s misuse of its intellectual property.

Ericsson also wants payments for any potential damages Apple could cause by continuing to use the patents without a license.

“Ericsson’s technology and our engineers are behind these patents,” Gustav Brismark, head of the company’s patent strategy told the NYT. “We’re asking for a fair payment from Apple for using our technology.”

But Apple claims it’s willing to pay to use those patents, pointing out in last month’s counterclaims that it respects Ericsson’s rights to its intellectual property, but it just doesn’t want to pay what the other company is demanding.

“Unfortunately, we have not been able to agree with Ericsson on a fair rate for their patents,” Apple said last month.

Ericsson Again Sues Apple Over Wireless Patents [NYT Bits Blog]