The European Commission used antitrust rules on Tuesday to prevent telecoms restricting competition, by using court orders for patent infringements on industry standard technology.
A Standard Essential Patent (SEP) is needed to ensure that industry standard technology can be developed. It is near-impossible to develop standardised smartphones or tablets without using an SEP, which can give patent holders an advantage over their competitors.
The commission branded a German court order on behalf of Motorola Mobility against Apple as an abuse of dominant market position under EU antitrust rules. The injunction was made on the basis of an alleged infringement of Motorola’s SEP.
Competition commissioner Joaquín Almunia said, “Motorola persisted in using a threat of an injunction to force Apple into a settlement agreement with very restrictive conditions.”