Nokia receives preliminary ITC ruling against HTC, may lead to a US import ban

One of the many legal battles involving smartphone manufacturers is Nokia suing HTC over several patent infringements. Nokia filed a complaint with the International Trade Commission (ITC) claiming HTC encroached on several patents with their Android based devices. 

Through the course of the litigation several of the claims were dropped leaving three patent claims to be ruled on. An Administrative Law Judge with the ITC has issued a preliminary ruling against HTC on two of the three remaining patent claims which very well could lead to a U.S. import ban against HTC.

In the preliminary order, Judge Thomas Pender ruled,

"The Administrative Law Judge hereby determines that a violation of Section 337 of the Tariff Act of 1930, as amended, has been found in the importation into the United States, the sale for importation, or the sale within the United States after importation of certain electronic devices, including mobile phones and tablet computers, and components thereof, in connection with the claims of U.S. Patent Nos. 7,415,247 and 6,393,260."

The two patents in dispute includes one on a "method for attenuating spurious signals and receiver" and one on a "method and arrangement for transmitting and receiving RF signals through various radio interfaces of communications systems".

The third patent dealt with tethering was not found infringed upon by HTC.

HTC and Nokia will now petition the International Trade Commission for a review of findings which could lead to a U.S. import ban on HTC Android devices. It is more likely a situation where HTC will have to pay licensing fees to Nokia to continue to use the patented technology should Nokia prevail with the ITC.

This latest ruling against HTC comes on the heels of another lawsuit filed in German Court by Nokia claiming USB configuration patent infringement by HTC.  A lawsuit in which analysts feel that Nokia will likely prevail in.  If successful in either the German action or the ITC complaint, it could prove costly for HTC to either pay for the licenses to use the technology or redesign their Android devices.

You can read Judge Pender's redacted ruling here (full ruling will be issued later).

Source: Foss Patents; Thanks, Riffraffy, for the tip!

George Ponder

George is the Reviews Editor at Windows Central, concentrating on Windows 10 PC and Mobile apps. He's been a supporter of the platform since the days of Windows CE and uses his current Windows 10 Mobile phone daily to keep up with life and enjoy a game during down time.