LG sues TCL in Germany over LTE patents

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LG Electronics has filed a patent infringement lawsuit against TCL in Germany for allegedly infringing upon its LTE-related patents.

The South Korean electronics maker on Sunday accused its Chinese rival of allegedly applying three of LG’s LTE standard essential patents onto its feature phones and smartphones without permission.

LG filed the lawsuits at district courts in the German cities of Mannheim and Dusseldorf.

The company began sending warnings to TCL back in 2016 and had since sent numerous requests for a licensing agreement to be negotiated but the Chinese company refused, LG said. 

See also: LG needs to decide where OLED should live 

The Korean company previously had a LTE patent dispute with US handset maker BLU in 2017 and is currently in the midst of another dispute with French smartphone maker Wiko over the same issue.

LG ended its dispute with BLU after both companies came to a licensing agreement. For its legal stoush with Wiko, the Korean company won a trial earlier this year in Germany that was in relation to the same three patents in question for the LG-TCL dispute. 

TCL has experienced rapid growth in both global TV and smartphone sales in recent years. The company was the third largest TV maker in terms of shipment in the second quarter this year, according to IHS Market. It also moved 15 million smartphones last year, according to Strategy Analytics.

LG, meanwhile, is a leader in 4G LTE and 5G patents and has already set up a 6G research centre in South Korea which opened at the start of this year.

Earlier this month, LG filed a separate patent lawsuit against Hisense in the US, claiming the latter had used its display technology without permission.

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