Knowledge Center

Knowledge Center

Standard Essential Patent

A patent that has been deemed necessary to implement a standard.
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Description

A standards Essential Patent (SEP) is a patent that has been deemed necessary to implement a standard, or put another way, the patent must have been infringed if the standard has been implemented. Almost all standards bodies require companies to license these patents using Fair, Reasonable, And NonDiscriminatory (FRAND) terms. Within our industry the IEEE requires that all members must submit a “Letter of Assurance” that states that they will “grant a license under reasonable rates to an unrestricted number of applicants on a worldwide basis with reasonable terms and conditions that are demonstrably free of unfair discrimination.”

What is FRAND is hotly debated these days and many companies in the wireless and smartphone industries are testing the limits out in the courts.


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