Nokia loses key Android patent battle with HTC

Nokia has lost two patent rulings in Germany, including one 'flagship' patent at issue in over 30 infringement cases.
Written by Liam Tung, Contributing Writer

Nokia has lost two patent suits it filed against HTC, including one concerning the use of Google Play in Android devices.

The District Court of Mannheim ruled on Friday that HTC did not infringe on Nokia's EP0812120 patent covering a "method for using services offered by a telecommunication network, a telecommunication system and a terminal for it".

Nokia's complaint was aimed at HTC's use of Google Play and the content store on its Android devices, according to patent expert, Florian Mueller

The patent was one of the 45 Nokia brought against HTC, BlackBerry and ViewSonic in May 2009. Last December, BlackBerry (formerly known as RIM) settled with Nokia over a Wi-Fi patent, ending separate cases in the US, UK and Canada, while Nokia's complaints against ViewSonic and HTC proceeded to trial.

HTC on Friday said it was delighted with the Mannheim court's decision, claiming Nokia "exaggerated" the scope of its patent EP0812120 ('120), which it believes is the "flagship patent" in Nokia's 30 other undecided patent claims.

"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 said in statement on the company's website.

"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."

A Nokia spokesperson said in a statement to ZDNet that the company will proceed with infringement claims against HTC over a further 30 patents.

"Nokia respectfully disagrees with the court's decision and we are considering our options," a Nokia spokesman said.

"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 regarding HTC's alleged infringement on Nokia patent EP 1312974 also went against Nokia on Friday.

The next decision Mannheim Regional Court is expected to hand regarding Nokia's complaint against HTC over a power savings patent (EP0673175) will occur on 19 March and is likely to go against HTC, according to Mueller.

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