Breaking news: Nokia triumphs over IPCom

A report from Reuters ("Nokia says UK High Court rules for it vs IPCom") declares that giant mobile phone-maker Nokia has claimed victory in its Patents Court (England and Wales) patent dispute with German company IPCom, from which it now plans to seek to recoup its legal costs. According to Nokia's spokesman,
"This is an important decision, as it is not possible to infringe an invalid patent [oh yes it is, says the IPKat. See Coflexip v Stolt, here]. Nokia is pleased with these results, having won all patent infringement cases between Nokia and IPCom that have come to judgment".
Back in December a district court in Mannheim, Germany, put on hold an application by IPCom for injunctions to ban the sale and distribution of Nokia handsets in Germany, pending final decisions on the validity of the patents by the European Patent Office. These decisions are due later this year. IPCom is the owner of what used to be Bosch's mobile telephony patent portfolio, created between the mid-1980s and 2000, which includes about 160 patent families worldwide that are key for mobile communications standards.

The IPKat hasn't yet had the chance to read the decision in full. It's vast (67 pages and 27,000+ words) and it's not yet available on BAILII. If there's one thing it clarifies, it's the question as to what Mr Justice Floyd might have been doing over the Christmas break. You can read the full text, courtesy of the Kats, here [not any more -- see Addendum 2, below].

Addendum 1: After posting this report, the IPKat received a helpful note from Richard Vary (Nokia). He explained that the Nokia spokesman quoted in the Reuters report was explaining that you can't infringe an invalid patent because IPCom had previously claimed victory in similar circumstances, announcing that "Nokia was found to infringe". Nokia then had to explain to journalists, analysts and investors, who know little about patent law, why Nokia hadn't lost but could carry on selling mobile phones. Richard also points out two factual errors: (i) the patents are not before the EPO, but their German equivalents are before the Federal Patent Court; (ii) IPCom doesn't claim to have 160 standards related patents -- they claim around 30 families on their website.

Addendum 2: the report is now available on BAILII, so you can click and get it here.
Breaking news: Nokia triumphs over IPCom Breaking news: Nokia triumphs over IPCom Reviewed by Jeremy on Monday, January 18, 2010 Rating: 5

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