Nokia Sues HTC, RIM & Viewsonic In The US & Germany

Nokia has been a pioneer in the field of mobile, and because of this it is expected that they would have a truckload of essential patents that other manufacturers simply cannot do without. So with this backdrop it is surprising that Nokia’s not opened its war-chest to go after other companies as aggressively as I would have imagined.

One possible reason is that most companies willingly license them, as Louise Pentland, Nokia’s chief legal officer suggests. “We have already licensed our standards essential patents to more than 40 companies”. But news is that they have just decided to go after HTC, RIM & Viewsonic in the United States and Germany.

Pentland states, “Though we’d prefer to avoid litigation, Nokia had to file these actions to end the unauthorized use of our proprietary innovations and technologies, which have not been widely licensed.”

Nokia’s actions include complaints to the:

  • US International Trade Commission (ITC) against HTC
  • Suits against HTC and Viewsonic in the Federal District Court of Delaware, US
  • Against HTC and RIM in the Regional Court in Dusseldorf, Germany
  • Against all three companies in the Regional Courts in Mannheim and Munich, Germany.
In total, 45 Nokia patents are in suit in one or more of the actions. Some of the patents cover hardware capabilities such as dual function antennas, power management and multimode radios. On the software front, there are patents that include software features such as application stores, multitasking, navigation, conversational message display, dynamic menus, data encryption and retrieval of email attachments on a mobile device.

“Many of these inventions are fundamental to Nokia products,” Pentland concluded. “We’d rather that other companies respect our intellectual property and compete using their own innovations, but as these actions show, we will not tolerate the unauthorized use of our inventions.”

So there you go, Nokia is once again on the offensive. They took on Apple and won, time to turn-on the heat for HTC, RIM and Viewsonic. Squeezing a settlement out of these companies should serve as a good cushion for its bottom-line as the company transitions to Windows Phone.

[Via: Nokia Press]