Category Archives: Unfair Competition

Competition Law Patent Unfair Competition

US Court Grants Federal Trade Commissions Motion: Qualcomm Must License Any Willing Company, Including Rival Chip Makers


This is a monumental development: Judge Lucy H. Koh of the  Northern District of California has held that Qualcomm must license any willing licensee – this includes rival chipmakers, such as MediaTek or Intel or any other player.  This is huge: Qualcomm admittedly had never licensed any of its competitors.   Hence the decision may be read to hold that Qualcomm is in breach of its FRAND commitments. In my view, this judgement is also valuable from another perspective: Whether chipsets can…


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Unfair Competition

An Oxymoron by Definition – The Decision by UK Court of Appeal in Unwired Planet v. Huawei


A Google search throws up some amusing examples when one searches for oxymoron examples.           The recent decision by the UK Court of Appeal in Unwired Planet v. Huawei (click here) is exactly that.  Why, would you ask? Because on one hand there is Brexit and on the other hand this judgement-it seeks to enforce those patents that are not under its own jurisdiction.  Ergo-oxymoron.  Perhaps some part of the judgement seems to be yearning for…


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Trademark Unfair Competition

Mahindra Embroiled in Another “Fiat”-sco!


A long-standing rivalry between Mahindra and Mahindra and Fiat Chrysler Automobiles took a new turn on 11th September 2018, when the US International Trade Commission (“USITC”) [the US federal agency which investigates matters of trade and interrelated IP infringement issues] instituted an investigation based on a complaint made by Fiat. In its complaint, Fiat makes allegations of trade dress, trademark infringement and unfair competition under Section 337 of the Tariff Act of 1930 against Mahindra for “sale of certain motorized vehicles and components”. Section 377 provides…


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Copyright Unfair Competition

Film Title Protection: Madras High Court Rejects Copyright Claim Over Film Title, Holds Trade Association Rules Not Binding on Non-Members


A division bench of the Madras High Court, in its judgement in M/s Lyca Productions v J. Manimaran and Ors, delivered on the 22nd of February, overturned a single bench decision which upheld copyright protection to the title of a film. The judgement is significant not only for its analysis of the scope of copyright protection of film titles, but also for its sound rejection of the original plaintiffs argument that the rules of a trade association should be binding…


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Competition Law Patent Unfair Competition

Apple v. Nokia – patent privateering – Will the CCI take suo moto notice?


Last month, Apple and Nokia announced that they were settling all pending litigation with each other. In a statement available on Apple’s website, Nokia stated, “This is a meaningful agreement between Nokia and Apple,” Maria Varsellona, Chief Legal Officer, Nokia.  It moves our relationship with Apple from being adversaries in court to business partners working for the benefit of our customers.” Apple filed the first complaint against several entities, all of whom had purchased SEPs from Nokia / or were…


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Competition Law Patent Unfair Competition

A Critique of the Decision in Unwired Planet v. Huawei


On April 5, 2017, the UK High Court of Justice (Patents), Mr. Justice Colin Birss issued a detailed opinion [Unwired Planet v. Huawei ([2017] EWHC 711 (Pat), 5 Apr. 2017] in a matter involving SEPs and FRAND.  The Unwired Planet v. Huawei (hereafter “Unwired”) decision is extremely contentious and this posts covers only the issues that I believe need further consideration. Disclaimer: I advise several clients in matters involving SEPs and FRAND.  These are my views only. Long post follows. Background:…


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Copyright Unfair Competition

Delhi High Court Rules on the Jurisdiction of the ASCI; Holds that It Can Adjudicate upon Claim of Infringement and Passing Off


In a very interesting judgment delivered earlier this month, the Delhi High Court ruled on the jurisdiction of the Advertising Standards Council of India (ASCI) to adjudicate upon complaints relating to copyright infringement in advertisements (for those interested, we have previously blogged about the ASCI’s powers and functions in a post which can be found here). Holding that the existence of provisions under the Copyright Act, 1957 and the Trademark Act, 1999 exclusively empowering the district court to adjudicate upon…


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Competition Law Innovation Unfair Competition

Qualcomm under Fire: Korea FTC, US FTC, Class Action Suits, and Apple


  This (long) post is about Qualcomm.  Qualcomm has a business model that is based on IP, whether it is IP creation (SEP or manufacturing related) or IP licensing.  It has been the historical practice in the technology industry that licensing was, and per Qualcomm and related parties, still is, done on end value of device. Qualcomm, Ericsson, and Nokia are three top players in the SEP licensing domain and unsurprisingly hold similar views as their business model is SEP licensing….


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Competition Law Patent Unfair Competition

Samsung gets a favourable ruling v. Apple from the US Supreme Court


In a crisp 10 page unanimous opinion, the US Supreme Court overruled the (unanimous) Federal Circuit decision.   The US Supremes held that an “article of manufacture” need not be the end product as was claimed by Apple and agreed with Samsung that the article could be an intermediate product or a component !!! “The Federal Circuit’s narrower reading of ‘article of manufacture’ cannot be squared with the text of §289. The Federal Circuit found that components of the infringing smartphones…


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Competition Law Patent Unfair Competition

Guest Post: The Rs. 400 crore war between Monsanto and Indian seed companies with threats of price control and compulsory licencing of patents


What role could the competition and IPR frameworks play in a dispute between Monsanto and Indian cotton seed manufacturers? Prashant Reddy weighs in on the question of the extent to which private contract disputes can be interfered with by State regulation. (Long post ahead) The Rs. 400 crore war between Monsanto and Indian seed companies with threats of price control and compulsory licensing of patents Author: Prashant Reddy There is a storm brewing over foreign IP rights in India and,…


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