Indian consumer electronics major iBall and Swedish telecom equipment manufacturer Ericsson have settled a dispute on an alleged patent infringement case. The agreement follows iBall entering into a licensing agreement with Ericsson.  

“The parties have executed a Global Patent Licence Agreement (GPLA), which settled the disputes in the patent infringement lawsuit. Under the terms of the GPLA, the parties consented to dismissal of the patent infringement lawsuit by the Court, which finally occurred in November,” a source close to the development told BusinessLine .

 Earlier, the Division Bench of the Delhi High Court had directed the companies to try to finalise a licence agreement. The companies complied with the Court’s direction and have executed a GPLA, another source said. The GPLA is effective October 20, and the issue stands resolved as of November.

Earlier, Ericsson had moved the Delhi High Court alleging a patent infringement on products sold by iBall in India. The Swedish company had filed a similar case against Indian handset manufacturer Micromax Informatics, in which the court had ordered the Indian handset maker to pay royalty as an interim measure. 

Bone of contention

Ericsson had sued iBall on grounds that the Indian company did not sign a licence agreement on standard-essential patents, required for making mobile phones and other devices. iBall is a privately-held Electronics company headquartered in Mumbai.

The Swedish firm had alleged that iBall has not entered into a licensing agreement under the Fair, Reasonable and Non-Discriminatory (FRAND) terms. FRAND is a global norm under which patent holders agree to allow licensees the right to use patented technology.

In iBall’s case, this covered patents on wireless technology standards such as GSM, EDGE and third generation.

Following the suite, the High court had ordered an injunction on iBall’s imports of phones and devices that infringe patents, effective September 9.

iBall had appealed against the order, and the Appeals Court temporarily stayed the injunction as iBall and Ericsson negotiated a licence agreement.

Ericsson has entered into more than 100 licensing agreements with telecom companies over its essential patents, which include Indian vendors.