Ericsson and Apple reportedly have settled the patent disputes between them, including those involving standard essential patents that were pending in district courts in California and Texas as well as in the U.S. International Trade Commission. This is reported to be a 7-year agreement that involves cross-licensing as well as Apple paying royalties to Ericsson. Details of the agreement are not available.
It is not clear what spurred the settlement. The Federal Circuit’s recent CSIRO decision a few weeks ago on determining infringement damages for standard essential patents probably favored Ericsson’s royalty requests in those cases because it continued the Federal Circuit’s trend of favoring damages model that rely on actual real world licenses and dispels the myth that all patent damages models must always start with the smallest salable patent practicing unit (see our Dec. 3, 2015 post). This would have allowed Ericsson to rely more heavily on its established historical licensing program to establish royalty damages against Apple, and would have hindered a smallest salable patent practicing unit damages model that defendants have sought to assert against standard essential patents (as well as patents in general).