Motorola Mobility is under European Commission scrutiny, with the EC assessing whether the U.S. company “has abusively and, in contravention of commitments it gave to standard setting organizations, used certain of its standard essential patents to distort competition in the Internal Market in breach of EU antitrust rules.”
Following complaints by Apple and Microsoft, the EC says it will investigate whether by seeking and enforcing injunctions against Apple’s and Microsoft’s flagship products including the iPhone, iPad, Windows and Xbox “on the basis of patents it had declared essential to produce standard-compliant products, Motorola has failed to honor its irrevocable commitments made to standard setting organizations.
The governing body contends that, in these commitments, Motorola was supposed to license those standard-essential patents on fair, reasonable and non-discriminatory (FRAND) terms. As such, it will examine whether “Motorola’s behavior amounts to an abuse of a dominant market position prohibited by Article 102 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the EU (TFEU).”
The background: the EC says Motorola gave such FRAND commitments to the relevant standard-setting organizations when 2G and 3G mobile and wireless standards, the H.264 video compression standard and the standards for wireless local area network (WLAN) technologies were adopted. The EC also is investigating Samsung for alleged FRAND violations.
In addition, the EC is taking a look at an allegation by both Apple and Microsoft that Motorola offered unfair licensing conditions for its standard-essential patents in breach of Article 102 TFEU.