On Wednesday, Nokia Corp announced that it filed several lawsuits against Apple Inc. alleging violation of 32 technology patents. This is in response to the lawsuit Apple filed against Nokia a day earlier.
Nokia filed lawsuits in city courts of Dusseldorf, Mannheim, Munich and district court of Eastern Texas. They cover various areas such as patents for displays, user interfaces, software, antennas, chipsets and video coding.
Nokia issued a statement saying, “Since agreeing a license covering some patents from the Nokia Technologies portfolio in 2011, Apple has declined subsequent offers made by Nokia to license other of its patented inventions which are used by many of Apple’s products.”
On Tuesday, Apple had sought legal action against Acacia Research Corp and Conversant Intellectual Property Management Inc. alleging collusion with Nokia to extort payments from Apple.
“We’ve always been willing to pay a fair price to secure the rights of patents covering technology in our products,” said Apple spokesman Josh Rosenstock. “Unfortunately, Nokia has refused to license their patents on a fair basis and is now using the tactics of a patent troll to attempt to extort money from Apple by applying a royalty rate to Apple’s own inventions they had nothing to do with.”
None of the parties involved were available for a comment. Actions by Nokia and Apple seemed to have revived the “smartphone patent wars”, when Apple and Samsung were involved in several legal battles five years ago.
Apple filed the lawsuit after Conversant appointed Boris Teksler as its CEO. He was a former employee at Apple and worked as the director of patent licensing and strategy from 2009 to 2013. Acacia is a patent licensing firm and one of its subsidiaries had sued Apple for patent infringement and got $22 million as a settlement.
Furthermore, Conversant also claimed that one of its units had received $7.3 million settlement from Apple regarding infringements involving two smartphone patents.
Apple introduction of the iPhone in 2007 marked the beginning of the end of Nokia’s dominance as a cellphone maker. Later, they sold the handset division to Microsoft.