BRUSSELS Dec 7 EU regulators are examining
fresh complaints about alleged infringements of technology
patents, a senior EU antitrust official said on Friday, a sign
of the increasing stakes in the battle to protect intellectual
Companies are increasingly turning to the European
Commission to resolve their disputes, such as Apple,
Samsung, Google and Microsoft.
The new complaints mean the number of cases before the EU
competition watchdog have doubled to eight in just under a year.
Apple and Samsung are embroiled in legal battles over their
patents in some 10 countries.
"We have four other complaints, mainly related to the ICT
industry," Cecilio Madero, deputy director-general for antitrust
matters, told a Premier Cercle conference.
He said some of the cases were recent but did not name the
Madero also pointed to the difficulties of applying
antitrust rules to patent disputes. "It is easier for us to tell
you what is acceptable than to define what is acceptable," he
The EU competition watchdog is now investigating whether
Samsung's use of injunctions against Apple breached antitrust
Other ongoing cases involve Google-owned phone maker
Motorola Mobility, Microsoft and Apple. Microsoft has also
complained about Google while Google has complained about
MOSAID, a so-called patent troll which makes money by taking
action over patent infringements.
Companies could be penalised up to 10 percent of their
revenues if found guilty of breaching EU rules.