Open Telecom Standardization - How to work with patents - From patent prosecutors to intellectual asset strategists

Christian Arkelius, In-house European Patent Attorney, Ericsson, Sweden

The way the telecom industry works and has worked with patents traditionally is through open standards. An open standard is characterized in that it is open for anyone (i.e. any company or organization) that wants to be part of the standard and in that all technical specifications (i.e. technical advances) are made available. The open standards work well as long as the companies that contribute to the open standard are ensured a fair return for their contributions to the standard. The present convergence between voice and data communications means a market shift where new entrants are entering into competition with the traditional telecom companies, such as Ericsson. This, in turn, means that the traditional telecom market is changing. These changes in the telecom industry impact the way we, the patent attorneys, work and will work with patents in this field. Yesterday’s patent attorneys had to be legal specialists with extensive technical expertise in telecom. However, this is not sufficient for today’s and tomorrows patent attorneys. In order to be able to capitalize on telecom innovations today and in the future, I personally believe that the patent attorneys will need to shift from traditional patent prosecutors to intellectual asset strategists.

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Sweden Intellectual Property Telecommunications July 2010 Vol. 3, No. 12, Summer 2010

Christian Arkelius

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Mr. Christian Arkelius is a European Patent Attorney working at the Licensing & Patent Development (LPD) organization of Ericsson. He started his career as a patent attorney at a Swedish intellectual property law firm, after receiving his MSc. in Industrial Engineering and Management from Chalmers University of Technology in 2002. Mr. Arkelius joined Ericsson in 2009, after several years as a patent attorney at various intellectual property law firms and after having been entered on the list of professional representatives before the European Patent Office. At Ericsson, Mr. Arkelius acts in all matters relating to patent drafting, patent prosecution, enforcement of patents, patent opposition and re-examination proceedings, etc. Besides his extensive knowledge in European Patent Law and his knowledge in Chinese Patent Law, Mr. Arkelius is particularly conversant with the drafting and prosecution of patents relating to computer-implemented inventions. Also, in his role as a project leader of Ericsson’s Patent Post-Grant activities in one of Ericsson’s major jurisdictions, besides managing the team of internal and external patent attorneys/attorneys-at-law and providing advice to numerous internal attorneys on a diverse range of legal issues, he has acted as a managing patent attorney in many patent opposition/re-examination cases.

Ericsson

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Ericsson is a world-leading provider of telecommunications equipment and related services to mobile and fixed network operators globally. Over 1,000 networks in more than 175 countries utilize Ericsson’s network equipment and 40 percent of all mobile calls are made through Ericsson’s systems. Ericsson is one of the few companies worldwide that can offer end-to-end solutions for all major mobile communication standards. Ericsson invests heavily in R&D and actively promotes open telecom standards and systems. Also reflecting Ericsson’s ongoing commitment to technological leadership, the company has one of the industry's most comprehensive intellectual property portfolios containing over 25,000 granted patents, the number 1 in mobile telecom. The LPD organization of Ericsson works closely with the R&D and standardization organizations to secure the technology and intellectual property leadership for Ericsson. Today, Ericsson has a clear patent leadership in mobile communications standards such as GSM, WCDMA, HSPA and LTE (Long-Term Evolution, sometimes referred to as 4G). LPD is a global organization with its headquarters in Stockholm. It incorporates units across the globe with more than 160 patent attorneys, licensing managers, patent portfolio managers, and other support staff.

Sweden Intellectual Property Telecommunications July 2010 Vol. 3, No. 12, Summer 2010
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