Thursday, June 16, 2011

Nokia loses UK court ruling vs patent firm IPCom

(Reuters) - A court in London ruled a key patent held by a German company called IPCom was valid, marking a major victory for the group in its long legal battle with Finnish phone maker Nokia Oyj.
"It is the first case for some considerable time where a telecoms patent has been upheld as valid and infringed by the UK courts," said Myles Jelf, a partner at Bristows Partner which advised IPCom, an intellectual property firm .
A spokesman for Nokia said the ruling would not affect its sales in Britain.
"We respectfully disagree with the court's view that the patent is valid in amended form, and that some of our older products may have infringed the amended patent. We intend to appeal that part of the decision," the spokesman said.
IPCom had acquired Bosch's mobile telephony patent portfolio, created between the mid-1980s and 2000, which includes about 160 patent families worldwide including some of the key patents in the wireless industry, including a patent which standardises a cellphone's first connection to a network.
Nokia and IPCom have been fighting in several courts for more than four years over the patents and Nokia has said IPCom's licensing fee demands are excessive and unjustifiable.
Earlier this week Nokia won another major legal battle when Apple Inc agreed to pay for using its licences.
"Nokia -- rightfully -- expects competitors to respect Nokia's intellectual property, and that is exactly what we expect from Nokia for the Bosch inventions that IPCom owns," IPCom director Bernhard Frohwitter said.
(Editing by Jon Loades-Carter and David Holmes)

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