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Nokia to ITC: all Apple products infringe our patents

updated 11:20 am EST, Tue December 29, 2009

Nokia adds iPod, Macs to patent claims

Nokia on Tuesday escalated its legal war against Apple with a complaint to the US International Trade Commission. The argument claims not only that the iPhone infringes patents but that "virtually all" products Apple makes, including iPods and Macs, are guilty of violating 7 Nokia patents. Nokia's allegations touch on both hardware-related patents for antennas, cameras and power management as well as user interfaces.

"Nokia has been the leading developer of many key technologies in small electronic devices," Patent Licensing General Manager Paul Melin claims. "This action is about protecting the results of such pioneering development. While our litigation in Delaware is about Apple's attempt to free-ride on the back of Nokia investment in wireless standards, the ITC case filed today is about Apple's practice of building its business on Nokia's proprietary innovation."

The company didn't outline its goals with the patent dispute, though most such ITC complaints are meant to seek import bans that would prevent a company from selling products affected by the dispute.

Nokia's move follows just after an Apple countersuit which claims the Finnish phone maker copied the iPhone when it couldn't compete properly on its own. Critics have charged Nokia with "competition by lawsuit," or attempting to compete by either damaging a rival's profit margins or blocking its sales rather than creating a better product.

Apple has been contacted for comment but hasn't had an opportunity to respond as of press time.

by MacNN Staff



  1. aristotles

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Wow. Nokia management has officially lost it

    They should get taken to the nearest mental hospital for their own protection.

    The patent system should be shut down immediately and replaced with something that works.

  1. Grrr

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Who would have thunk it..

    Nokia can't be arsed to be innovative anymore. Nokia get steamrollered by Apple. Apple being a company that was not even remotely known for making mobile phones. Nokia sales plummet, their finances are in the red, and now they are scratching about down the back of the corporate sofa for cash. Must be rather embarrassing for Nokia..
    Then some bright spark suggests playing the legal card against Apple, in some vain attempt to save the day.

    Talk about throwing low punches, just because your products are about as interesting as a wet piece of cardboard.
    Lawyers and dull products are not going to turn around their fortunes and save the company from inevitable doom & gloom.

    Comment buried. Show
  1. testudo

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Re: Wow

    And how is it not working? That someone develops a technology, uses it, and actually wants others to pay for using it? Yeah, you're right. You should start working on your proposal for the new system. Maybe something like "Apple can do what it likes, copy whatever they like, but no one is allowed to copy them". That's a good place to start.

    And of course the counter-suit is just retaliation to Apple's counter-suit, which was just their "Well, you sue us over this, we'll sue you over that". Next up, Apple suing Nokia claiming that everything they sell is violating Apple's sense of quality engineering and style.

  1. JulesLt

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Here's a start

    Testudo - how's this for a start - there should be a limitation on the time between a product appearing, and you submitting your claim for patent infringement. That would destroy a lot of bad submarine patents (i.e. letting people bring products to market using your patent, and then suing them - but only once there are millions to be had - Eolas being a case in point).

    What I'd be asking here would be :
    When did you first become aware of the infringement?
    What steps did you take i.e. when were Apple made aware?

    Of course we all know that what's really happening here is not that they want a fair and non-discriminationary return on their patent investment - what they desperately want is a patent trading agreement with Apple. This is the public end to a failed private negotiation.

  1. JeffHarris

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Don't innovate... LITIGATE.

    Apple passed Nokia at warp speed and now they call in the lawyers to try and get a slice of Apple pie. Yep, just like all the other patent trolls out there. Oh, how the once mighty do fall!

    Awww... C'mon, Nokia! You can do better than that!
    Just make better products.

  1. climacs

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Take note Microsoft

    not that long ago, Nokia and Motorola were giants in the cellphone business. I do believe they were the top 2 around the middle of this decade that's ending this week.

    Now Apple's eaten their lunch, and they are coming for you next.

  1. LenE

    Joined: Dec 1969


    ITC becomes Nokia's weapon of choice

    I thought it was odd and commented here that Nokia was able to get the ITC to invalidate a federal judge's ruling on patents. The odd thing being that the ITC's action was extra-constitutional.

    I couldn't figure out how to get the URL to work, so here it is:

    Apple is a much higher profile target, and one that may draw much more light to the ITC machinations.

    -- Len

  1. c4rlob

    Joined: Dec 1969


    This is the problem with Law firms

    Companies have these law firms on retainer and need to make up something for them to do or accept the fees as a loss. Interesting fact is how rarely Apple files these types of vague suits. They spend their time actually creating new technology and patents or defending against people attacking their technology or blatantly copying it (a la Psystar).
    These attack suits are just further confirmation of Apple being the lead dog.

  1. nat

    Joined: Dec 1969


    oh dear

    "That someone develops a technology, uses it, and actually wants others to pay for using it?"
    then the rest of the incredibly stupid post.

    so, case closed, Apple guilty according to... testudo. now, ladies and gentlemen, there's a surprise. who saw that one coming?

    testudo, remember how we have talked about that original thought idea? do make that one of your new years' resolutions ol' bean. you really need a reboot.

  1. chas_m



    Um ... Nokia ...

    I have terrible news for you.

    If Apple is "violating your patents," then so is the rest of the smartphone industry. And Google.

    Oh but look -- you haven't sued them. Interesting.

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