Taiwanese quango sues LG for patent infringements

LG is being sued by a Taiwanese research quango, which has accused it of infringing on 22 patents on mobile phones, air conditioners, Blu-ray disc players and LCD televisions.

According to the Taipei Times, Hsinchu-based Industrial Technology Research Institute (ITRI), which is supervised by the nation’s Ministry of Economic Affairs, filed four lawsuits against LG, which it submitted to a federal court in Texas on 26 November.

The quango, which was founded in 1973 “to strengthen the technological competitiveness of Taiwan” through research and development, claims LG Electronics infringed on patents with 15 of these related to LCD televisions and a further two for mobile phones.

ITRI says that unless LG Electronics is barred from using the inventions,  it “will suffer additional irreparable harm for which there is no adequate remedy at law and impairment of the value of its patent rights.”

LG may be in for a tough ride. ITRI is backed by a huge pool of 14,000 patents, meaning it’s well equipped to engage in legal strife. Last year, it obtained 397 U.S. patent rights, the highest among research institutions worldwide, according to the statistics of IFI Patent Intelligence.

The news comes as LG is facing financial difficulties, just days after it decided it must scrap its business wing to save the pennies.

The case is also similar to the IP litigation between Acer and HP three years ago, when the former successfully used the support of the ITRI to force the latter in accepting a settlement.

The ITRI isn’t the only one after LG’s blood. On 24 November, LG, along with Nokia and  STMicroelectronics were sued by the California Institute of Technology (Caltech) for allegedly infringing its patents.

We wonder if this has anything to do with Sockgate