Pioneer and Samsung in Plasma HDTV Dispute

It seems that competition in the courts is as important as what takes place on the store shelves these days. Pioneer filed a suit against Samsung on Monday, claiming patent violations in their plasma panel technology. Samsung reportedly will file a counter-suit.

This is a newsworthy development, but not shocking. There is a lot of valuable intellectual property involved in HDTVs, and it makes sense that a company would seek to protect these assets just as they would their products or their factories. Lawsuits such as this can also be a gambit to force another company into working out licensing agreements. Last year, LG Electronics and Matsushita (parent company of Panasonic) signed cross-licensing agreements to settle a suite. Pioneer and Samsung reportedly have been in talks for a similar cross-license agreement for more than a year, so this lawsuit may be an attempt to pressure the parties to come to an agreement.