In January of this year, a patent dispute between Apple and Ericsson flared up with renewed vigour, as the former considered the pricing policy chosen by the latter in the area of license fees to be unfair and the latter accused the former of abusing its own developments. This week it became known that the parties were able to reconcile the license agreement and extend it by several years.
As explained Reuters, the new multi-year license agreement is cross-sectoral and encompasses more than just Ericsson’s patented technologies related to the transmission of information over wireless networks. The terms of the contract are also not disclosed, but it is known that Apple and Ericsson are simultaneously waiving mutual legal claims. According to some estimates, the Swedish company could lose up to $98 million a quarter due to such disputes, and this is a significant portion of its customer royalty income. In the current quarter, for example, that number could reach $578.5 million, although it’s clear that that amount reflects deductions from all customers, not just Apple.
The previous license agreement between the companies was concluded in 2015 in such painful disputes for a period of seven years, so that a year ago a new conflict arose between the companies over the terms of the contract extension. Apple was interested in getting the rights to use Ericsson technologies related to the transmission of information in 5G networks, but did not consider the $5 license fee for each device sold as fair payment for the Swedish counterparty’s contribution for the development of the telecommunications industry. The terms on which the parties have concluded a new license agreement are not specified.