Indian handset maker Micromax has been sued by Ericsson on charges of patent infringement. The Swedish network equipment maker is seeking a whopping Rs. 100 crore in damages. The company also claims that it has been negotiating with Micromax for about three years now and has finally moved the Delhi High Court to seek legal remedy.
Patent Infringement cases have become a common in the western countries where large technology companies such as Apple, Samsung, HTC, Motorola, Google, Microsoft et al are battling multiple cases. However, this is the first time a patent infringement case of such high stakes has rocked the Indian telecom space.
As per Ericsson, the bone of contention is Micromax's refusal to enter into a licensing agreement covering its patented innovations across several wireless technology standards such as GSM, EDGE and 3G.
Commenting on this case, Micromax via a press statement said, "Micromax is committed to negotiating a FRAND license with Ericsson as has Ericsson undertaken to providing a Fair Reasonable and Non-Discriminatory (FRAND) license to Micromax. Since the matter is pending before the Hon'ble court it would be incorrect for Micromax to make any further statements on the matter".
Micromax is one of the most popular handset brands in India. The company has recently churned out Android-based smartphones like A110 Canvas 2 (Review | Pictures) and A116 Canvas HD (Review |Pictures). As per the company, both these smartphones have got an encouraging response from the Indian market. According to a news report in The Economic Times, the disputed smartphones includes Micromax Ninja smartphones and the popular Canvas 2 series. Micromax's Funbook Talk tablet too is reportedly under the scanner.
While Micromax and Ericsson are at loggerheads for the patent infringement case, several other Indian handset makers are feeling the heat. Ericsson is reportedly planning to take similar legal action against some of other Indian handset makers, though at this point it is hard to comment who will be next in the firing line.