The U.S. International Trade Commission (ITC) has decided to investigate Apple over a patent licensing dispute with Ericsson.

The dispute began in January when the two companies sued each other over patent licensing terms, with Apple claiming that Ericsson is demanding "excessive royalties" for patents related to LTE wireless technology.

As reported by PC World, the investigation by the ITC is the result of recent actions by Ericsson to escalate the issue and put pressure on Apple to settle. In late February, Ericsson filed seven new lawsuits against Apple, accusing the company of infringing on as many as 41 separate patents, with the end-goal being a sales ban on Apple products in the U.S..

Patent licensing disputes have become an increasingly common occurrence in the tech industry, and there's no telling where the ITC will land with their decision in this particular case. However, with the ITC's decision to investigate Apple, Ericsson's appears to at least be succeeding in applying a bit of pressure on the tech giant.

Source: PC World