SEP Rivals Guidance on 5G, IoT Licensing Principles Re-ignites Tensions in Patent Community

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In the final version of the Commission’s Communication “Setting out the EU approach to Standard Essential Patents”, published in November 2017, it appears that feedback and criticism from both patent owners and patent implementers have not gone unnoticed. Significantly, the Commission has elected to avoid taking a clear position on the highly controversial issue of the meaning of FRAND, and particular licensing terms and valuation principles. Concerning the enforcement environment for SEPs, the final Communication mostly confirms the Commission’s position described in earlier drafts of the Communication. However, it is worth noting that the Commission moved away from the view that the defense against injunctive relief should be available to any party in the value chain.