Standard-essential patents (SEPs) are on the rise as the number of yearly newly declared patents has almost tripled over the past five years. The 5G standard alone counts over 150,000 declared patents since 2015. Similarly, litigation around SEPs has increased. One of the driving factors of recent patent litigation is, on the one hand, the sharply increasing number of SEP filings, and on the other, the shift from connectivity standards (e.g. 4G/5G, Wi-Fi) mostly incorporated in computers, smart phones, and tablets to new industry applications where standards are implemented in connected vehicles, smart homes, smart factories, smart energy and/or healthcare applications. Licensing SEPs will be more difficult to navigate outside of the smartphone industry and each sector will apply connectivity differently. Licensing mechanisms will need to become more flexible, as there is no one-size-fits-all model that will work across all industry verticals. A recent IPWatchdog webinar discussed the main SEP litigation trends with leading industry experts. This report summarizes the expert discussion and looks at worldwide SEP litigation data across technology standards such as 3G, 4G, 5G, Wi-Fi, video and audio coding, digital video broadcasting, advanced television systems, digital subscriber line and many more.

 

The analysis of recent litigation trends sheds light on:

  • Who drives SEP litigation?
  • Which are the most litigated standards?
  • The role of PAEs, patent pools and large SEP owners.
  • SEP litigation outside the smartphone world.
  • SEP litigation venues around the world – which jurisdiction will prevail?

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