AOC Launches Probe into San’an Opto’s Potential AlGaInP LED Patent Infringement

(Author: Ivan Lin, Editor-in-Chief, TrendForcehttp:// Translator: Judy Lin, Chief Editor, LEDinside)

Taiwanese LED chip manufacturer Arima Optoelectronics Corporation (AOC) released a statement on Thursday stating it is assessing whether Chinese competitor San’an Opto’s AlGaInP LED products had infringed its wafer bonding technology patents.

High power AlGaInP LEDs produced using wafer bonding technology for making red, yellow, orange and IR LED applications are widely being applied in displays, traffic signals, interior and exterior automobile lights, security and IoT applications. The industry upholds a positive outlook for AlGaInP product developments.

AOC LED patents potentially involved in the lawsuit. (Source: LEDinside)

AOC was established in 1998, and is one of the earliest LED manufacturers in Taiwan. In recent years, the blue and green LED (InGaN LED) market has become overtly competitive, and the company has shifted its primary focus to AlGaInP LED. One of the company’s core technology is wafer bonding for manufacturing of ultra-bright AlGaInP products. “We have invested a lot of resources in LED wafer bonding technology since 1998,” said the company President Pei-jih Wang. “AOC released its first LED product utilizing the wafer bonding technology by 2001, and started mass producing in 2002. The product was supplied to the global market in the same year.”

As the company developed new products, it patented the special wafer bonding technology in Taiwan and U.S., and obtained many related patents.

AOC suspects some of its former employees that are now employed by San’an Opto are using AOC’s patented technology, and infringed its wafer bonding patents. The company initiated investigations to confirm patent infringement situation, and is considering to take legal action against San’an Opto at the appropriate time.

Yet, some industry insiders believe the wafer bonding technology has been on the market for a long time and it might be difficult for AOC's case to succed. Other manufacturers including Osram, Epistar, and Visual Photonics Epitaxy (VPEC) all possess wafer bonding patents and technology. There are still a lot of uncertainties surrounding whether AOC’s patent infringement lawsuit against San’an Opto will succeed.

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