SKorean antitrust watchdog probing Samsung

September 6, 2012 by Youkyung Lee

(AP)—South Korea's antitrust watchdog said Thursday it has launched an investigation into whether Samsung Electronics Co. is abusing its dominant position in the wireless market to disadvantage Apple Inc.

The investigation could add a headache for Samsung in its global legal battle with Apple. Samsung is betting on its pool of third-generation wireless patents to win patent lawsuits against its U.S. rival. But its argument that Apple should be barred from selling products that illegally use patents that are considered essential technology for have scored only one victory—in a Seoul court—while drawing scrutiny from regulators on at least two continents.

"We are reviewing whether allegations in the complaint lodged by Apple are true," said a official, who declined to be named because they weren't authorized to speak to the press. "Apple filed a complaint earlier this year that Samsung is breaching fair trade laws," the official said.

Companies such as Samsung, which own so called standard-essential patents, are expected to license these patents under fair and non-discriminatory terms. It is a measure that allows companies to adopt a compatible technology and also to allow the entrance of new players to the market.

In response to Apple's April 2011 accusation that Samsung is blatantly copying the iPhone and the , Samsung countersued Apple that it is using its standard-essential patents without permission.

A South Korean court ruled Aug. 24 that Apple infringed Samsung's standard-essential patents and ordered some and iPad products be banned in South Korea. The court said in the ruling that Samsung's pursuit of a sales ban on products based on the violation of standard-essential patents is not an abuse of its market power.

But Samsung's claims were rejected by other courts in Europe.

The antitrust watchdog will take the rulings into consideration, the official said.

Samsung denied it was abusing market power.

"Samsung has at all times met its obligations to the fair licensing of its telecommunications standards-related patents," a Samsung spokesman said. Apple spokesman Steve Park declined to comment.

In January, Europe's antitrust watchdog launched a similar investigation into whether Samsung was fairly licensing its patented wireless technology to other mobile phone makers.

Explore further: Samsung files new claims against Apple in Germany

0 shares

Related Stories

Samsung files patent complaint against Apple in France

September 12, 2011

South Korea's Samsung Electronics said Monday it had filed a complaint in France against its US rival Apple for infringement of three mobile phone technology patents in its iPhone and iPad tablet computers.

Samsung seeks sales ban on iPhone 5

September 20, 2011

South Korea's Samsung Electronics will file lawsuits to try to block the sale of Apple's iPhone 5 as part of its global legal tussle with the US technology giant, a report said Tuesday.

Dutch court refuses to ban iPhone, iPad sales

October 14, 2011

A Dutch court refused Friday to grant Samsung an injunction banning Apple from selling iPhones and iPad tablets in the Netherlands, dealing the South Korean electronics giant a defeat in its global patent battle with its ...

Samsung files lawsuits against Apple

April 22, 2011

(AP) -- South Korea's Samsung Electronics Co. says it sued Apple Inc. for patent rights violations, only days after Apple sued Samsung for the same reason.

Samsung says Germany rejects Apple's sales ban bid

February 2, 2012

South Korea's Samsung Electronics said Thursday a German court rejected Apple's bid to ban sales of its tablet computers and new smartphones, the latest chapter in a global legal battle between the rivals.

Recommended for you

Samsung to disable Note 7 phones in recall effort

December 9, 2016

Samsung announced Friday it would disable its Galaxy Note 7 smartphones in the US market to force remaining owners to stop using the devices, which were recalled for safety reasons.

Swiss unveil stratospheric solar plane

December 7, 2016

Just months after two Swiss pilots completed a historic round-the-world trip in a Sun-powered plane, another Swiss adventurer on Wednesday unveiled a solar plane aimed at reaching the stratosphere.

Solar panels repay their energy 'debt': study

December 6, 2016

The climate-friendly electricity generated by solar panels in the past 40 years has all but cancelled out the polluting energy used to produce them, a study said Tuesday.

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.