- Patents, FRAND disputes and referrals to the Court of Justice (Optis Cellular Technology v Apple Retail)
- What are the practical implications of this case?
- What was the background?
- What did the court decide?
- Case details
IP analysis: This is the decision from the latest hearing in this complex standard essential patent (SEP) and fair, reasonable and non-discriminatory (FRAND) dispute between Optis/Unwired Planet and Apple. The hearing was in relation to a reference to the Court of Justice of a number of questions raised by Apple regarding, among other things, Optis’ ability to bring a prohibitory injunction in respect of its SEPs. Mr Justice Birss refused this application. While it was acknowledged that this would be the final opportunity for UK courts to refer such questions to the Court of Justice (given the impending expiry of the Brexit transition period), Birss J decided that such a reference would derail the trial schedule and timings, and that the UK Supreme Court felt able to decide questions relating to Article 102 TFEU and the interpretation of the Court of Justice decision in Huawei v ZTE without a reference. Written by Philip Partington, partner, and Lakmal Walawage, associate, IP department, JMW Solicitors LLP.
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