LG Electronics has Taken TCL to Court of Law

  • This lawsuit by LG, revolves around unlicensed use of three mobile technologies
  • LG had earlier filed a lawsuit against Arcelik A.S. and Beko

Korea based LG Electronics (LG) this week filed lawsuits against TCL, a Chinese handset manufacturer, in the German district courts of Mannheim and Düsseldorf, for infringing its LTE technology patents. The lawsuits allege that the China based TCL knowingly implemented technologies in its handsets that infringe three of LG’s standard essential patents that cover key areas of LTE handsets: minimizing the loss of packet transmission, control timers for uplink synchronization and interference reduction in the up-link synchronising process.

“LG has long invested heavily in LTE innovation and when it becomes necessary, we take action to protect these important assets. As a leader in LTE technology, we have a responsibility to ensure that competition in the industry takes place fairly and legally. These lawsuits are aimed at protecting our investments and challenging the unlawful use of our vital assets and to safeguard the competitiveness of the industry for future innovation, ” said Jeon Saeng-gyu, executive vice president of LG’s Intellectual Property Center.

Numerous attempts made by LG to remedy its concerns

The suits against TCL were filed only after numerous attempts were made by the company to remedy its concerns, to no avail, informed LG. LG’s official statement read, “LG has successfully asserted its extensive LTE patent portfolio on a number of occasions in the courts by legally challenging the unlawful use of its technologies. As a result of recent legal action, BLU agreed to a licensing deal with LG and a German trial court ruled in favor of LG in three separate litigations against Wiko.”

According to TechIPm, a professional IP research and consulting firm, LG ranked first in 4G (LTE/LTE-A) patents every year from 2012 to 2016. Germany-based market intelligence company IPLytics lists LG as the owner of 11 percent of all 5G standard essential patents issued to date.

Patent against Arcelik A.S. and its affiliates

The company had earlier filed patent infringement lawsuits against Turkish-based home appliance manufacturer Arcelik A.S. and its German affiliates Beko Deutschland GmbH and Grundig Intermedia GmbH in The Munich (Ger.) District Court I. The suits center on the unlicensed implementation of LG’s freezer door-ice making technology featured in a number of the companies’ refrigerators sold in Europe.

“We continue to proactively protect our intellectual property and will respond vigorously to the unauthorized use of our patented technologies. As international competition over innovation increases, it is more important than ever that we protect our investments in research and development,” informed Jeon Saeng-gyu, at the time LG had filed this patent against Arcelik A.S. and its affiliates.

Interestingly, Arecelik A.S and Voltas had announced a joint venture between the two in 2017. Both the companies have been retailing appliances under Voltas Beko brand name since last two years in India. It is not clear whether the lawsuits include Voltas Beko products being retailed in India or not.