You may have noticed that Samsung and Huawei haven’t exactly been the best of friends here of late. Back in May, Huawei sued the Korean tech titan over alleged patent infringement on 4G technology and software interface. Not one to take such accusations lying down, Samsung immediately threatened to countersue. Then in July, Huawei leveled another lawsuit at Samsung, and it appears that the Korean company has now elected to make good on their threats.
This lawsuit looks pretty aggressive at first brush. Filing through Beijing’s Intellectual Property Court, Samsung is seeking damages tallying $24.1 million (161 million Chinese yuan) on the claim that the Mate 8 and the entire line of Honor-brand smartphones are infringing on Samsung’s patents.
If the damages weren’t enough, Samsung is also calling for the court to prevent Huawei and Beijing Hengtongda Department Stores from manufacturing any more of these devices or selling any current inventory.
The Wall Street Journal notes that these lawsuits come in conjunction with Huawei’s rise in global distribution. The Chinese smartphone maker has grown to the size that it’s beginning to pose a competitive threat to Samsung, a company who currently holds the position of the number one smartphone seller in the world. In Q1 2016, Huawei sold more Android smartphones to consumers than any of Samsung’s competitors worldwide. Huawei currently holds an estimated 8.3 percent of the market that is steadily increasing while Samsung’s 23.2 percent share is slowly shrinking.
In Q1 2016, Huawei sold more Android smartphones to consumers than any of Samsung’s competitors worldwide.
Just as Huawei claimed to have made all due effort to reach licensing agreements with T-Mobile in a separate lawsuit they filed recently, so too is Samsung saying that they regret that they failed to reach an agreement outside of courts. “Despite our best efforts to resolve this matter amicably,” said Samsung in a statement, “it has regrettably become necessary to take legal action in order to defend our intellectual property.”
We will review any documentation and defend ourselves as appropriate when we do. In the absence of a negotiated settlement, litigation is often an efficient way to resolve [intellectual property rights] disputes.
What are your thoughts regarding these dueling lawsuits between two of the world’s largest smartphone manufacturers? Frivolous litigation or all part of the game? Let us know your take in the comments below!