Massive Blow to HTC – Sale Ban on HTC One in UK on Infringement of Nokia’s Patent

In our blog article titled “Nokia is on a Suing Spree”, we explored many of the patent wars initiated by Nokia over European Patent number 0998024 and its other patents. HTC emerged as the biggest victim of Nokia’s infringement lawsuits as in past 2 to 3 years; Nokia has filed approx. 50 different breaching claims against HTC in the U.S., UK, Germany, and other parts of Europe. The rulings for many of these infringement suits are out and Nokia has successfully beaten the Taiwanese smartphone maker in most of these cases.

Most recent is Nokia’s win in UK where court has banned HTC One, company’s flagship Android handset. In fact, a number of HTC devices breach the same patent, including the HTC One, One Mini, One Max, 8S and Desire 601. These HTC handsets use a technology patented by Nokia patent ‘024 relating to Broadcom BCM4239, BCM4330, BCM4334, and Qualcomm WR1605 chips. These chips and the allied technology are designed to assist broadcast voice and text messaging used in almost every smartphone that is available in the market today.

Also note that Nokia paid more than $1 billion to Qualcomm in royalties since the early 1990s only to later become biggest customer for its chips by entering in a 15Y licensing agreement back in 2008. Similarly, Broadcom Corporation also became Nokia’s proud EDGE partner by supplying advanced single-chip cellular baseband processors and its companion power management unit (PMU) for Nokia’s selected EDGE mobile phones. So, it is quite evident that Nokia had the foresight to accumulate patents related to futuristic technologies. To gather such an insight of pattern of patenting activity in this technology domain, as we have mentioned in one of our other blog article “Nokia vs. Apple: An Epic Patent War B/w Two Tech Giants” , Nokia must have invested in state-of-the-art searches or landscape analysis .

The court order would make HTC vulnerable up to March 2014, when it will release a successor to the HTC One. Thus, court has given the company time to appeal its decision till December 6, 2013. And if HTC can’t win its appeal, if it submits one, it’s possible many of its devices will disappear from store shelves up and down the UK. Nokia requested an injunction on October 30, 2013 over EP No. 0998024. And despite of knowing that it is facing a claim for infringement of the Nokia patent, HTC launched HTC One smartphone.

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