• Apple Countersues Nokia

    Having been sued by Nokia for patent infringement, Apple today responded by filing a countersuit of its own. The new complaint accuses Nokia of violating 13 of Apple's patents. In announcing the counterclaim, Bruce Sewell, Apple’s General Counsel and senior vice president, said “Other companies must compete with us by inventing their own technologies, not just by stealing ours.”

    On October 22, Nokia sued Apple, saying the iPhone maker was taking a “free ride” on Nokia's research and development efforts, which the Finnish phone giant said it had spent €40 billion on. Saying, essentially, "no, you're the copycat," Apple's countersuit denies all Nokia's claims of patent infringement against it and accuses Nokia of trying to copy the iPhone.

    In 2007, Apple introduced the iPhone a ground-breaking device that allowed users access to the functionality of the already popular iPod on a revolutionary mobile phone and Internet device.
    In contrast, Nokia made a different business decision and remained focused on traditional mobile wireless handsets with conventional user interfaces. As a result, Nokia has rapidly lost share in the market for high-end mobile phones.
    In response, Nokia chose to copy the iPhone, especially its enormously popular and patented design and user interface.
    The lawsuit complains that Nokia has infringed on 13 Apple patents, though in their press release Apple was not specific on which ones.

    Apple is asking the US District Court of Delaware to completely dismiss Nokia’s suit, with prejudice (meaning Nokia cannot sue again), and demands that Nokia pay damages for infringing Apple's patents, as well as interest and legal fees.

    This step had been predicted by observers at the time of Nokia's original lawsuit. It's a fairly common approach for companies when negotiations break down and end up in court. Most observers believe this is all hardball negotiating tactics, and that the case will eventually be settled out of court. Otherwise, the fight could spread into the European court system and possibly end up in the U.S. International Trade Commission.

    image via phonezone.exofire.net
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