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NEC licenses Honeywell LCD tech

Legal action yields first public result

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Honeywell's legal action against 34 electronics and computing companies for allegedly infringing one of its LCD patents has yielded its first public licensing agreement.

NEC's LCD division this week said it had acquired the right to use technology outlined in US patent number 5,280,371, which Honeywell filed in 1992. The financial terms underpinning the deal were not disclosed.

The patent covers a LCD's "directional diffuser" - the filter used in many LCDs to increase the angles at which the screen can be viewed. It's a technique used throughout the LCD world, across a range of devices, such as notebook PCs, LCD monitors and TVs, PDAs, mobile phones, digital cameras and so on. Not surprisingly, given the wide use of diffraction systems, Honeywell has already licensed its IP to major LCD manufacturers, including Samsung and LG Philips

Honeywell launched its legal action in October, targeting 34 companies, including Dell, Apple, Nokia, Sony Ericsson, Fujitsu, Sony and Toshiba. ®

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