Nokia announced that it has signed a patent license agreement with Apple. The agreement will result in settlement of all patent litigation between the companies, including the withdrawal by Nokia and Apple of their respective complaints to the US International Trade Commission.
The financial structure of the agreement consists of a one-time payment payable by Apple and on-going royalties to be paid by Apple to Nokia for the term of the agreement. The specific terms of the contract are confidential.
“We are very pleased to have Apple join the growing number of Nokia licensees,” said Stephen Elop, president and chief executive officer of Nokia, in the press release. “This settlement demonstrates Nokia’s industry leading patent portfolio and enables us to focus on further licensing opportunities in the mobile communications market.”
Source: Nokia Corporation
Florian Mueller writes for FOSS Patents, “This frees up resources for both Apple and Nokia. Apple is embroiled in litigation with the three leading Android device makers (Motorola, HTC and Samsung). Nokia doesn’t have any litigation worries at the moment, but part of its new strategy is to ratchet up the monetization of its patent portfolio. The fact that Nokia has demonstrated its ability to defeat Apple — after the most bitterly contested patent dispute that this industry has seen to date — is a clear proof of concept. Other companies whom Nokia will ask to pay royalties will have to think very hard whether to pay or pick a fight.”
Mueller writes, “This is also very significant with a view to Android. Given that Android is in many ways a rip-off of Apple’s operating software, Android-based devices are highly likely to infringe on largely the same Nokia patents that Apple now felt forced to pay for.”
“I don’t hold shares in any tech company, but if I were an Apple shareholder, I would probably view this outcome favorably. Nokia emerges victorious, but this is a sweet defeat for Apple because its competitors — especially those building Android-based devices — will also have to pay Nokia, and most if not all of them will likely have to pay more on a per-unit basis because they don’t bring as much intellectual property to the table as Apple definitely did,” Mueller writes. “So from a competitive point of view, I don’t think Apple loses much. On the bottom line its profitability may even benefit from this because Apple’s margins face no greater threat than Android-style commoditization of smartphone technologies.”
Much more in the full article – recommended – here.