ParkerVision, a company that produces cellular radio chipsets and other wireless radio frequency tech, has entered motions into the U.S. District Court for the Middle District in Florida against Apple, Samsung and LG. ParkerVision is claiming patent infringement on the parts of the three companies and is asking for unspecified damages, as well as a ban on imports and sales for infringing products. ParkerVision is a product manufacturer rather than a simple patent troll out for profit, making this lawsuit a bit different from most patent scuffles that Samsung, Apple and LG have faced in the past outside of other mobile OEMs. Additionally, ParkerVision has lodged a complaint with the International Trade Commission, ensuring that this case won’t be contained within United States borders.
An interesting fact in this case is that all of the parties being sued are Qualcomm customers in some way, whether they use Qualcomm’s Snapdragon chipsets, mobile radio tech or are a Qualcomm manufacturing client. In the lawsuit, ParkerVision actually goes as far as citing a Qualcomm chip pointed out in a teardown report of an Apple iPhone 6S. Parker Vision has claimed four patents are infringed upon by various Qualcomm products featured in prominent models such as the iPhone 6S, LG G3 and Samsung Galaxy S6. Obtaining the sales and import ban they’re pushing for, as a result, will likely prove to be an immense undertaking considering the fact that there has been no proof of patent infringement or formal review of the case at this time. This only serves to highlight the need for patent reform.
There is no date set for an initial hearing just yet, but to say the denial of an initial embargo is expected would be putting it nicely. Some analysts seem to believe that, on top of defending their products’ use of the patented technology, Qualcomm and the companies being sued will likely try to have ParkerVision’s patents declared invalid, rendering the case invalid by default. Shifting the blame to Qualcomm is a definite possibility, but none of the three companies have issued a comment at this time. ParkerVision has yet to issue comment to media outlets.