5G iPhones have been banned from sale in Colombia due to a 5G patent infringement dispute between Apple and Ericsson.
A Colombian court in Bogotá on Saturday waved the prohibition hammer, saying Apple would not be able to sell or import the 5G iPhones into the country, despite Apple arguing that 5G networks were not available to Colombian consumers. The ban affects the latest models, including the iPhone 12, iPhone 13 and iPad Pro, which the court found infringed Ericsson’s patent relating to 5G technology.
Foss patents reported that the ban comes “less than six months after the current spate of patent infringement lawsuits Ericsson vs. Apple began.”
The order not only bans Apple from selling and importing 5G iPhones and iPads in Colombia, but also from commercializing and advertising them. Apple is also instructed to “alert and communicate” with stores, retailers, social media platform owners, mass media and e-commerce platforms in the country to ensure compliance.
Nor can Apple seek an antisuit injunction, which would have prevented Ericsson from enforcing the judgment in the first case. Instead, the Cupertino, California-based company is suing Ericsson, Texas for damages resulting from the Colombia verdict and all fines, fees, penalties and costs incurred as a result.
Apple paid Ericsson royalties to use the patented 5G technology in their devices, but did not renew the licenses when they expired, leading Ericsson to accuse Apple of patent infringement.
Then, in December 2021, Apple sued the Swedish company over allegations that it violated friendly, fair and non-discriminatory (FRAND) terms, that the patents were standard-essential, and that the royalties were too high. The lawsuit has since sparked an onslaught of other lawsuits by both parties seeking import bans on their respective products in some international markets, including Colombia.
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