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Nokia loses "flagship" patent decision against HTC in Germany

Today in Germany, the District Court of Mannheim ruled that HTC was not guilty of infringing on two patents owned by Nokia, including one involving the use of Google Play on HTC Android devices. The patent (EP0812120), which nebulously covers a "method for using services offered by a telecommunication network, a telecommunication system and a terminal for it," was one that HTC called the "flagship patent" in the suit that alleges over 45 intellectual property violations by HTC.

The same legal action was also taken against Viewsonic and Blackberry (formerly Research In Motion) in Germany, the UK and the USA. Blackberry settled, leaving Viewsonic and HTC to battle it out with Nokia in the courts.

HTC rejoiced at the decision saying:

"HTC respects the intellectual property rights of others, but believes that Nokia has exaggerated the scope of its patent in order to extract unwarranted licensing royalties from Android handset manufacturers. HTC also believes that the '120 patent is invalid, and will continue with invalidity actions pending before the English Patents Court and German Federal Patents Court. We fully expect the patent to be revoked before any Nokia appeal proceedings take place."

Nokia said in a pretty bitter statement that it "respectfully disagrees with the court's decision" that it is looking into what further recourse remains.

"As we said in May 2012, we took these actions to end HTC's unauthorised use of our proprietary innovations and technologies. More than 30 further Nokia patents have been asserted against HTC in other actions in Germany, the US and the UK and we anticipate that we shall prevail in these. HTC must respect our intellectual property and compete using its own innovations."

A separate decision that was handed down today concerning EP1312974 went in favor of HTC as well. The District Court of Mannheim will next decide on Nokia's claim that HTC violated EP0673175, a patent covering power-saving, on March 19. Patent expert, Florian Mueller, expects that decision to fall in Nokia's favor.

While Nokia is certainly not the only company playing the patent lawsuit game, it is one of the busiest. They recently decided to back Apple in a suit against Samsung.

Source: ZDNet

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Reader comments

Nokia loses "flagship" patent decision against HTC in Germany

58 Comments

As a Nokia fan, it's somewhat disappointing to see them lose, but I must say that I am glad that they did lose on the flagship patent, at least as its quoted titled and the patent.  Honestly, they should have been suing Motorola, LG or some other non-WP player.  However, I can understand why they would be inclined to avoid Google, at least to start with.
It looks overly broad, even back in 1997 when they filed it. Now, assuming that it were valid and how broad it is, it's hard to see how anyone isn't violating it.

The post would not take because it thinks it's spam with the link, but the patent can be found at freepatentsonline.com/EP0812120.html

One last try for HTC before fading into oblivion... and try to play dirty one last time.. hehehe..
Lord Nokia-sus, is not bothered.

Dude, stop trolling. HTC makes better phones than Nokia. It's sad to see people claiming to be 'fans' just because they bought a phone.

I agree with you that htc makes good phones but not as good n innovative ones as Nokia all the hard work can be seen in a Nokia phones roaring throughout the H/w & S/w apps.

Have you seen the 8x comparison to 920? I know that Nokia does its best not to be saved by Microsoft again, but it's overpricing the phones and trying to prove it's still in the game with these patent law suits.

you do realize that the 8x has an issue where color rubs off the phone, and that initially it was cheaper to open a 2 year contract with nokia then it was with htc right?

Well I have one and I'm not blue, so to speak. But I will not pay 80 euros extra for the same configuration with the exception of a smaller 1.3 frontal camera and a very customized OS. Nokia has a very long history of making good products, I admit. But also has used the fact that it is originally European to attract European customers. This is not true anymore. It's been given a second chance by Microsoft but they're still struggling.

Second chance? Nokia was actually making money in the billions per quarter and selling the most smartphones in the world before partnering with MS.

Please make sure you tell something accurate before you talk. Nokia was bankrupt in 2009 and Microsoft saved it by giving it a lot of money. In return, Microsoft made a contract with Nokia, that all new phones made by Nokia should have Windows OS on them. Kind of... You scratch my back, I scratch yours. Symbian is obsolete anyway.

Smartphones shipped in 2010:

Nokia 100.1 mil
Samsung 23.9 mil
Apple 47.5 mil
Nokia operating profit for the fourth quarter of 2010 was 884 million euros. They made the deal with MS in Q1 2011.

Stop all the bickering..Nokia and HTC should be working together to try and promote Windows Phone 8..not fighting over patents..

Is that like how Samsung and HTC work together to promote android? Thus isn't a charity, so each company is entitled to do what it deems necessary to protect its interests.

while true , I think HTC has a long history trolling Nokia , (they basically stole and biggy backed many press events for Nokia) .
again while true , HTC could've made a phone that didn't look and feel like a Lumia but they didn't .
HTC got the 8x and 8s which are Windows 8 brands , with all the MS push behind them that wasn't fair nor made any progress .
and that's fine , but stealing patents will always be a red line and its a tradition that Asian companies just don't respect laws. and those who don't respect laws don't deserve a free pass when breaking laws bites them in the ass.

Colors that were never part of HTC's style before. We don't see it on their Android phones. Yet, Nokia comes along and dominates WP and suddenly HTC came up with the idea of colors on their own? LoL. Suuuurrrreeee....

Well since Nokia invented colors, then I guess I'll give you that. Besides that, the phones look nothing alike. Now if I take a colored brick from the foundation of my house and write Nokia on it with chalk, you may have a case.

I didn't claim that Nokia invented colors. But that is Nokia's style. It's been their style for decades.

HTC started with the colors for WP after Nokia came into the picture and dominated WP sales.

I don't mind that HTC copied the idea of using colors. It is a good idea. There is no patent on it.

But you're kidding yourself of you think they would have done it without Nokia's influence.

LOL, Nokia said it supports Apple even though it has nothing to do with their patent cases, and now this. Not to mention how they're holding back smartphone adoption by selling S40 devices as "smartphones" to people who don't know better.

Nokia is a joke, I'd never buy a device from them.

So what if Nokia supports Apple against Samsung? Samsung was accused, indirectly/off the record, of stealing some of Nokia's tech

If Nokia believes they have valid patents that are being infringed upon, it's their duty to their stockholders to pursue it court (and Nokia has one quite a few, including against BlackBerry and Apple).

I'm going to make a wild guess that you have never used Nokia.
I'm not trying to put down what you prefer. I'm just saying that maybe you should try it out and see the difference.

Oh yeah of course...
And my other statements? And this patent they're trying to monetize on HTC?

True innovators don't sue other companies with patents. And S40 is a dirty joke to the mobile world.

True innovators don't sue others with patents? What planet is that thought process from?

Innovators should just let people steal their stuff? Does that somehow make them more "true"?

what logic are you using? innovation and intellectual property are two different things. hey hows about i live in your house while you go work and pay the bills? i mean your a successful guy right? how ever could you try to kick me out of your house?

If car manufacturers carried on like this there would be no cars on the road! OEM s need to spend more time & efforts in making reliable phones & not court cases

you got rounded corners, ROUNDED CORNERS LOOK JUDGE ITS RECTANGULAR BUT IT HAS ROUNDED CORNERS WE DESERVE COMPENSATION FOR THAT INNOVATION!!!