In a Communication published today, the European Commission is offering guidance and recommendations for a balanced and efficient approach to Standard Essential Patents (SEP) as a head-start in the global technological innovation and in particular the potential of 5G and the Internet of Things. The Communication addresses transparency of SEP declarations, SEP essentiality checks, patent pools and licensing platforms in order to facilitate SEP licensing, as well as open source software and standards as an essential part of 5G and innovation.
The Communication is aligned with the work structure and contents of what has been undertaken in and delivered by the NGMN IPR Forum.
Two objectives are reconciled in the Communication: product implementers can access technologies under more transparent and predictable licensing rules, while at the same time patent-holders are rewarded for their investments in R&D and standardisation activities so that they are incentivised to offer their best technologies for inclusion in standards. The Communication proposes a holistic approach and sets out key principles for SEP licensing taking into account how industrial sectors are organised as well as efficiency considerations. Raising awareness and working together with all stakeholders will be necessary for a successful implementation of these principles and to ensure concrete results of the actions announced, notably by fostering the participation of start-ups in the roll-out of the Internet of Things. The Commission therefore promises its material support and invites all stakeholders to actively engage in their implementation.
The press release issued by the European Commission: http://europa.eu/rapid/press-release_IP-17-4942_en.htm
The related Communication: Setting out the EU approach to Standard Essential Patents