Nokia Files Patent Suit Against Apple Over iPhone

No. 1 mobile handset maker Nokia Corp. has filed a lawsuit against Apple Inc., claiming patent infringement by the iPhone.

The Finnish giant filed the suit in the Federal District Court of Delaware, saying every iPhone model to date violates a full10 patents for security and encryption, the handling of wireless data and speech coding. Nokia added that the patents enable compatibility to mobile standards and cited 40 other companies that are licensing the patents the proper way.

“The basic principle in the mobile industry is that those companies who contribute technology development to establish standards, create intellectual property, which others then need to compensate for,” Rahnasto said. “Apple is also expected to follow this principle.”

Nokia said its $60 billion research and development investment during the past 20 years has yielded “one of the strongest and broadest” patent portfolios.

“By refusing to agree to appropriate terms for Nokia’s intellectual property, Apple is attempting to get a free ride on the back of Nokia’s innovation,” said Ikka Rahnasto, vice president of legal and intellectual property at Nokia, in a statement.

Apple said it doesn’t comment on pending litigation.

The iPhone is eating into Nokia’s worldwide market lead somewhat, with Apple recently reporting a 41 percent increase in sales over last year. Research firm Canalys shows the iPhone going from a 2 percent global share to a 14 percent share in the space of a year, challenging BlackBerry maker Research in Motion Ltd. for the No. 2 position. BlackBerry has 20 percent of worldwide handset sales, according to Canalys.

Nokia meanwhile saw its share fall 6 percent in the most recent quarter, to account for 35 percent of handset sales, it said in its third-quarter earnings.

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