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Ericsson brings 5G patent infringement battle to the UK

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Ericsson is extending its legal battle with Apple over 5G patents, with new filings indicating the patent infringement fight will also be taking place in the United Kingdom.

In early 2022, Ericsson and Apple scaled up their disagreements over 5G patents that Ericsson believes Apple infringed with the iPhone and other products. In the latest development in the affair, Ericsson is taking the war to the U.K.

Ericsson, represented by law firm Taylor Wessing, filed with the High Court of Justice for England and Wales on June 6 over patents, as spotted by FOSS Patents. It is split into two cases, with HP-2022-000013 listing Apple Retail UK as its defendant, and case HP-2022-000014 including Apple Retail UK, Apple Distribution International, and Apple Inc.

The two cases are designated as “Part 7” claims, which relate to patents and registered designs, and have been assigned to the Patents Court. It is unclear exactly what patents are included in the suit, but it it is reckoned they could be standard-essential patents.

The fresh filings arrive after the two sides failed to find a resolution in mediation with the Eastern District of Texas. It is possible that the U.K. suits are in retaliation, as firms in mediation typically don’t want to be observed as being hostile to other parties.

The UK cases now means the Ericsson-Apple 5G patent battle is being fought in at least six countries, including the U.S. ITC, Brazil, Columbia, Germany, and the Netherlands.

Ericsson’s filings aren’t the only ones Apple has to contend with in the U.K. It is currently in the middle of another patent lawsuit against Optis in the country, again over wireless patents.

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