California
24 May 2017
Reporter: Mark Dugdale

Nokia and Apple settle new dispute


Nokia and Apple have settled all outstanding litigation following a resumption of hostilities between the companies late last year.

The settlement, which includes a multi-year patent licensing deal and an up-front cash payment to be paid to Nokia, puts a stop to litigation that spanned the US and Germany and saw Apple claim in federal court that the Finnish company conspired with patent licensing companies to unlawfully extract royalties.

Their agreement will see Nokia provide certain network infrastructure products and services to Apple, which will also resume carrying Nokia digital health products in its retail and online stores.

“This is a meaningful agreement between Nokia and Apple,” said Maria Varsellona, chief legal officer with responsibility for Nokia’s patent licensing business. “It moves our relationship with Apple from being adversaries in court to business partners working for the benefit of our customers.”

Jeff Williams, COO of Apple, added: “We are pleased with this resolution of our dispute and we look forward to expanding our business relationship with Nokia.”

Nokia moved swiftly to counter Apple’s competition claims in December last year. The Finnish company lodged patent infringement complaints against Apple in the Regional Courts in Dusseldorf, Mannheim and Munich, Germany, as well as in the US District Court for the Eastern District of Texas and the International Trade Commission.

Apple was accused of infringing 32 patents in total, covering technologies such as displays, user interfaces, software, antennas, chipsets and video coding.

The companies agreed a licensing deal and an end to hostilities in 2011, but that deal didn’t include these new patents.

Nokia’s patent infringement claims appeared to be prompted by Apple’s competition lawsuit the Finnish company and Acacia Research Corp and Conversant Intellectual Property Management.

The suit claimed that Nokia and the patent licensing companies colluded to extract royalties from Apple.

The parties are yet to comment on whether Apple’s complaint against Acacia and Conversant still stands.

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