Nokia Demands to Stop Sales of RIM’s Blackberry Phones

Nokia Wants to Forbid Sales of Wi-Fi-Enabled Smartphones from RIM

by Anton Shilov
11/28/2012 | 11:40 PM

Nokia Corp. wants to stop sales of smartphones from Research in Motion with support for Wi-Fi technology, or virtually all the Blackberry handsets that are available on the market today. The Espoo, Finland-based company this week won a patent dispute with RIM and currently demands the rival to stop selling Blackberry in the U.S., U.K. and Canada.

 

“RIM is liable to pay royalties and damages to Nokia for its […] sales of any subscriber terminals (handsets or tablets) ... compatible with the WLAN standard. RIM has not contested that it manufactures and sells products using WLAN in accordance with Nokia's WLAN patents,” wrote a Swedish arbitrator in a ruling, reports Reuters news-agency.

Nokia and RIM signed a cross-licensing agreement covering certain cellular essential patents back in 2003. In 2011, RIM sought arbitration, arguing that the license extended beyond cellular essentials, particular to Wi-Fi technologies. In 2008 the agreement was prolonged. But later on Nokia divested certain patents to MobileMedia Ideas, a firm set up by Nokia, Sony and MPEG LA to manage intellectual property contributed by Nokia and Sony. RIM contends that the patents in question were covered by its earlier deal with Nokia, and argued as proof that Nokia never sought to enforce them until they were divested to MMI. In November 2012, the arbitration tribunal ruled against RIM.

“RIM is not entitled to manufacture or sell products compatible with the WLAN standard without first agreeing with Nokia on the royalty to be paid for its manufacture and/or sale of subscriber terminals compatible with such standards,” a statement by Nokia reads.

“The arbitration decision is not appealable and the U.S. Court can be expected to enforce the judgment by issuing an injunction against RIM, which would effectively put RIM out of business. RIM has only one choice now - to license Nokia's patents. It should be a quick process. No substantive issue will be re-litigated. The U.S. court merely needs to enforce the verdict of the Swedish arbitration tribunal,” said Alexander Poltorak, chief executive of patent consultancy General Patent Corp.