Nokia sues Apple over iPhone patents

DELAWARE, US – Nokia opened a new front in its intensifying battle with Apple on Thursday when the Finnish mobile phone maker filed a lawsuit claiming that its rival’s flagship iPhone infringed Nokia patents.

Ilkka Rahnasto, Nokia’s head of legal affairs and intellectual property, accused Apple of seeking “a free ride on the back of Nokia’s innovation”. 

Nokia said the lawsuit, filed in a US federal court in Delaware, involved 10 patents that it alleged had been “infringed by all Apple iPhone models shipped since the iPhone was introduced in 2007”.

The legal challenge comes as Nokia tries to mount a high-stakes fight back against Apple in the fast-growing smartphone segment after losing market share to the iPhone and Research in Motion’s Blackberry.

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

”Apple is also expected to follow this principle. By refusing to agree appropriate terms for Nokia’s intellectual property, Apple is attempting to get a free ride on the back of Nokia’s innovation.”

Nokia said the 10 patents covered wireless data, speech coding, security and encryption and involved “technologies fundamental to making devices which are compatible with one or more of the GSM, UMTS (3G WCDMA) and wireless LAN standards”.

The lawsuit came a week after Nokia announced that it fell into loss during the third quarter and suffered a decline in its share of the smartphone market.

There was no immediate comment from Apple. – Financial Times