Apple Launches Nuclear Patent Counterstrike On Nokia

from the just-like-Thomas-Jefferson-envisioned dept

We've discussed in the past how many large companies now view patent accumulation as something of a nuclear stockpiling technique. That is, if you accumulate enough patents, other large companies won't sue you for patent infringement, because you'll just sue them right back for infringing on your patents. As ridiculous (and obviously against the basis of the very patent system) as this is, it has certainly limited some patent lawsuits between large tech companies. But every so often, a nuclear battle breaks out. Earlier this year, Nokia, jealous over the success of the iPhone, sued Apple. Apple, of course, has bragged about all those patents it holds on the iPhone... so... the obvious next step has occurred, and Apple is lobbing back charges of patent infringement against Nokia. In the end, the two sides will probably work out some sort of settlement, but the whole process is a huge waste of time and resources. Wouldn't we all be better off if they just focused on competing in the marketplace by creating better products?


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  1.  
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    Marcel de Jong (profile), Dec 14th, 2009 @ 1:31am

    Competing througCreating better products?

    Have you any idea how much that costs? No, this is way cheaper, trust us...
    kinda regards,
    the legal team.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  2.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Dec 14th, 2009 @ 1:36am

    Well, I was under the impression that Apple bought Infineon Chips, which had been properly licensed by Nokia. If Infineon didn't have a license, then it's a problem between Infineon and Nokia. As I believe, Apple iPhone Design was based on an Infineon spec, and would have built around it if Infineon would have disclosed that it didn't have proper licensing.

    Why didn't Apple just choose the Qualcomm MSM chip family from the get go? It had all the licensing agreements in place. Heh. Random thoughts...

     

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  3.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Dec 14th, 2009 @ 2:16am

    Re:

    To further describe:
    I suppose I'm a little confused when Nokia tries to be the victim and apparently outsources it's own chip fab to Qualcomm.

    Regardless of the problems Infineon gave Apple, Nokia will need to pay Apple for infringement of their IP.

    Perhaps they'll both find a middle ground but only after they understand that iPhone exists because of an Infineon Spec, and because of Infineon's inability to acquire proper licenses from Nokia, it may be in turn, more Infineon's fault than Apple's fault.

    Perhaps Nokia should be asking Infineon for royalties... No?

     

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  4.  
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    Big Al, Dec 14th, 2009 @ 2:44am

    Re: Re:

    But if Apple own Infineon, then Apple is ultimately financially responsible.

     

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  5.  
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    Lucretious, Dec 14th, 2009 @ 2:48am

    Wouldn't we all be better off if they just focused on competing in the marketplace by creating better products?

    what.....and put the parasites out of work?

     

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  6.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Dec 14th, 2009 @ 4:52am

    Re: Re: Re:

    Do they?
    or are you spewing

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  7.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Dec 14th, 2009 @ 5:07am

    Don't blame the patent system, blame the legal system in general. When the costs of defending are higher than the costs of settling, well...

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  8.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Dec 14th, 2009 @ 8:05am

    Apple is as bad as microsoft about not inventing anything, and patenting everything. Nokia has been the inventor in phones for 30 years, to think Apple made any cell phone advancements that should be patentable is utterly ludicrous.

     

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  9.  
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    Mikecancook, Dec 14th, 2009 @ 8:43am

    Competing in the marketplace?

    Duh, Nokia tried that. Now they are suing.

     

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  10.  
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    Lobo Santo's Ugly Dog, Dec 14th, 2009 @ 8:46am

    Apple is just worried because the borg are coming to get them. Google announced today it will sell it's own phone, and there is potential for a itunes killer and app store killer in there as well.

     

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  11.  
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    Peter F, Dec 14th, 2009 @ 9:13am

    "Nokia, jealous over the success of the iPhone, sued Apple."

    Yea, it's all high school to you isn't it? Nokia gave patents to the standards bodies with the agreement that adopters would license them. Apple, too busy with illegal option backdating problems, choose to thumb their nose at the process that all other device manufacturers follow.

    Apple, standing on the shoulders of giants and pretending they are just really tall. Absurd.

     

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  12.  
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    Anonymoose, Dec 14th, 2009 @ 9:52am

    Re: Competing in the marketplace?

    That's exactly what I was going to say. Nokia has lost in the court of technology. They didn't see the smartphone coming, and are now way behind. This is an effort to survive, at least in the US market.

     

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  13.  
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    Bullshit, Dec 14th, 2009 @ 10:59am

    Re:

    Bullshit

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

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    Jamie (profile), Dec 14th, 2009 @ 2:31pm

    Re: Re: Competing in the marketplace?

    "Nokia has lost in the court of technology. They didn't see the smartphone coming, and are now way behind."

    What are you talking about? Nokia had smartphones on the market several years before Apple even thought about the iPhone. They all run Symbian, which still holds the highest market share of any smartphone OS.

    The only thing you can credit Apple for is making smartphones consumer-friendly. They took what was largely existing technology and slapped a nice coat of paint on top of it. They then spent a fortune on marketing and making the device "cool", and now it has a mass following.

    Sure, the iPhone is a great device. It does what most people want, in a way that's easy to learn. But from a technology standpoint it's well behind the curve, and Apple's policy on what apps they allow on the store is arbitrary at best. You're pretty much locked in to doing what Apple want, in the way they want you to do it. I just can't stand that.

     

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  15.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Dec 14th, 2009 @ 6:44pm

    Michael Arrington over at TechCrunch might disagree with you on that now.

     

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  16.  
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    Gene Cavanaugh, Dec 15th, 2009 @ 11:07am

    Patent fight between Nokia and Apple

    EXCELLENT! You might add, this works only for the very wealthy, because it involves patents (for which there is often no invention!) written so obscurely that "experts" are required, leading to long, very expensive "defensive" lawsuits!

    It is another example of "welfare for the wealthy", and is the real reason the IP system doesn't work.

    It is also why I left mainstream patenting and now concentrate on small entity patenting (which does require there be an invention, and costs little to defend).

     

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  17.  
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    Gena777, Dec 21st, 2009 @ 5:13pm

    Preemptive nukes

    This item is interesting because I'd heard from other sources that the real reason Nokia sued Apple is that Nokia was trying to preempt a potential lawsuit against them by Apple for patent infringement. If this is true, then I guess Nokia's tactic backfired, because Apple is suing them anyway. Of course, the whole business may ultimately amount to no more than a lot of posturing on both sides, in preparation for a settlement agreement. Ah well, such is the world of patent law.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  18.  
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    sprearson81 (profile), Jun 8th, 2012 @ 6:28pm

    They sure love their patent strikes!

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]


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