Sharp and Samsung end LCD patent suits with cross-licensing agreementBy Matthew DeCarlo
Sharp and Samsung have called truce after nearly three years of bickering over LCD panel and module patents. The electronic-makers have inked a cross-licensing agreement that ends all ongoing patent infringement suits, and gives each firm access to patents owned by the other. Bound by a confidentiality pact, neither company will disclose details of the terms, but the conditions are in favor of Sharp, according to a company representative.
Sharp began the dispute back in August 2007 by filing a suit in a Texas court, alleging LCD modules manufactured and used by Samsung in its LCD TVs, computer displays and cell phones, infringed on five of its US patents. A few months later, Sharp extended the suit to South Korea, and Samsung responded with charges in Japan and the US. The battle eventually made its way to Europe and before the US International Trade Commission.
The new agreement reportedly terminates all previous rulings made by the ITC, including a US import ban on Samsung's infringing products.