back to article Netgear hauls Huawei to court over Wi-Fi patent spat

Netgear is suing Huawei in California, accusing its networking kit rival of racketeering and anti-competitive behavior for refusing to license Wi-Fi patents it holds on reasonable and non-discriminatory (RAND) terms. The complaint filed by Netgear (Case 2:24-cv-00824) on January 30 claims that Huawei is required to offer RAND …

  1. IGotOut Silver badge

    Bloody sick off the Chinese ripping off ideas....

    ...I mean fancy using patents and the courts to cripple competition, without saying what the patents are.

    1. ldo

      Re: without saying what the patents are.

      Was it Microsoft who pioneered that particular tactic? Against companies trying to sell Linux-based products (including Android), I recall.

      Or was somebody doing it before them? Just like Microsoft to rip off someone else’s idea, I know ...

  2. NoneSuch Silver badge
    Mushroom

    Buy any product made in Russia, China or Iran and you support the suppression of human rights.

    Vote with your wallet.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      I must confess that the first thing I did when war, and sanctions, broke out in ukraine, was stock up on razor blades.

      if i wanted to boycott russian ones, I could buy Israeli Personnas, or chinese seagulls, which are just a bit less sharp than my log splitting maul.

    2. Jan 0 Silver badge

      Suppression of Human Rights.

      I like products made in a country with chain gangs.

    3. IGotOut Silver badge

      I've some Welsh slate and chalk from the south coast if you want. Pretty much the only tech you get with nothing from China in it.

    4. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      + Israel.

  3. David Newall

    Default judgement

    What world are we living in when a huge company like Netgear doesn't bother turning up to court?

  4. rcxb Silver badge

    Turnabout

    Huawei was seeking to "put the squeeze" on companies for license fees relating to its sizeable patent portfolio in an effort to claw back some of the revenue it had lost

    :sniff: They just grow up so fast. :cry:

  5. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

    With the various sanctions* placed on Huawei would it be legally permissible to pay royalties? And if it wouldn't and the patents are essential to 5G where does that leave 5G implementation legally? Interesting quandary.

    *Even if present sanctions don't cover that it would still be possible for the US to add more.

    1. ldo

      Re: and the patents are essential to 5G

      I remember reading, in the early days of 5G and the first rumblings of anti-China discontent, that Huawei were already the single largest holder of 5G-related patents at that point.

      1. CJatCTi
        Facepalm

        Re: and the patents are essential to 5G

        America doesn't want the world to use Huawei as it is not "secure" and we should all boycott Huawei.

        America company sues Huawei so it can use it's technology and pay Huawei for the privilege.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      What's 5G got to do with wi-fi?

  6. biddibiddibiddibiddi

    > require companies involved in the standards process to disclose whether they will license on RAND terms any of their SEPs included in the standard

    I don't think "disclose" is the right word. That implies they have a choice and are just required to let the IEEE know whether they will or not. If IEEE won't include the standard without the company agreeing to RAND terms, then the wording is "require" them to agree to license on RAND terms.

    I also don't understand why there isn't a system set up where the terms are determined and made available before the patented technology is included in the standard. That's the only way to guarantee the licensing is reasonable and non-discriminatory - it's set up in advance, everyone is aware of the terms and it's accepted by the IEEE and its members, and there can be no difference in the terms from one company to another (flat fees, sliding scale based on volume, whatever). Any fees should then have to be processed through a body set up for the purpose under the IEEE or something, paid for by IEEE member fees and/or part of the licensing fees, so that there is a clear trail showing that everything is being paid as agreed.

    Or just don't include patented technologies in standards that will require fees at all. If IEEE has the option of declining to include the technology if the owner doesn't agree to RAND terms, then it's clearly not "essential".

    1. Mike007 Bronze badge

      I believe the "essential" comes from its inclusion in the standard meaning you have to implement it to be compatible with other devices.

      The aspect of if they could implement the standard without it is down to wanting a good standard. Let's say I have invented a new technique that allows you to double the throughout of a radio channel - is that essential? If I refuse to license it then you can do without, but if I say everyone is allowed to do it for a token payment of 1p/device then you will be very tempted to include it in the specs, and I get a payoff for my R&D investment.

      1. biddibiddibiddibiddi

        Ah that is at least a plausible interpretation, though confusing for anybody that just looks at the names and hasn't read the entirety of the legal structure of how these things are done. And I have no issue with them getting paid for their R&D (unless of course they did something shady to end up getting a patent on things that were in fact already done or obvious), but it should be standardized as part of the inclusion in the standard instead of being closed-door negotiations on a company-by-company basis, with anyone who wants to use the standard permitted to do so if they pay the established fee with no right of refusal by the patent-holder.

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