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Samsung Could Face Fines For Attempting To Exploit FRAND Patents In Suit Against Apple

29 December 2012

The Guardian:

The European commission’s competition arm, run by Joaquin Almunia, issued a formal statement of objections last Friday.

The potential fines can run to 10% of a company’s worldwide turnover, which in Samsung’s case would amount to nearly $15bn (£9.3bn), based on its 2011 revenues of $148.9bn. The commission opened its investigation into Samsung in January.

FRAND patents have to be licensed to all parties who want to use them; that is the law. Apple wanted to license for a “reasonable royalty”, but Samsung refused and instead tried to use these patents to enforce a ban on the iPhone. This is why they are facing these potential fines.

Juxtapose this to Apple’s patent policy. To date, Apple has not used standard-essential patents in an offensive manner.