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Nokia, Qualcomm cooperate to speed up patent case

Posted: 25 Feb 2008 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:patent suit? licensing agreement? patent infringement?

Nokia Corp. and Qualcomm Inc. have settled to look for ways in which a U.S. court in Delaware could solve some wider, international issues in the companies' legal battle, according to a Reuters report.

Nokia spokeswoman Anne Eckert said the companies are working on details, including timeline, so that the proceedings can move forward. She added that the common issues could include interpretation of their 2001 technology licensing agreement, and certain parts of standardization rules.

Eckert explained that the effort is meant to have the same interpretation applied to Qualcomm products using Nokia patents and to Nokia products if they are deemed to use Qualcomm patents.

This is a positive turn of events to the long-winding legal battle between the companies with about a dozen legal fights pending on three continents. The problem started when both failed to renew a part of a key technology licensing pact that expired in April 2007. Analysts have estimates that Nokia pays around $500 million to Qualcomm annually for patents and the Finnish handset maker wants to cut the sum.

However, Qualcomm's head of European operations, Andrew Gilbert, told Reuters that cutting the amount was not on the agenda. Gilbert said Nokia should pay what they should be paying as soon as possible. Gilbert added while Nokia's right to re-sign under the same terms expires by the end of the year and both parties may sit down and renegotiate, Qualcomm does not see the rate going for less.

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