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Matsushita Charges Samsung with Patent Infringement

Matsushita Electric Industrial Co. Ltd. Monday filed a patent infringement suit against Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd. and three of Samsung's U.S. affiliate companies, charging infringement three Matsushita's patents covering semiconductor dynamic random access memory (DRAM) technologies.

Matsushita, better known as Panasonic in the U.S., is asking for $100 million in damages per item for patents 5375095, 5053998, 5475648. Secaucus, N.J.-based Panasonic spokesperson Jim Reilly told InternetNews.com that his company filed the suit in New Jersey Federal Court last Friday after two years of unsuccessful negotiations for a resolution.

As for the next step, Reilly said suits such as these can often take two to three years to be heard in court. In the meantime, he said Matsushita is quite confident in its chances for a favorable verdict. Reilly also would not rule out an out-of-court resolution despite the recent failings between the two companies to come to terms.

"There is always the possibility that we may reach a mutually acceptable licensing agreement," Reilly said.

Samsung parties named in the complaint are: Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd. of Kyonggi, Korea, Samsung Electronics America, Inc. of Ridgefield Park, N.J., Samsung Semiconductor Inc. of San Jose, Calif., and Samsung Austin Semiconductor, L.L.C. of Austin, Texas.