Nokia recently learned from a Qualcomm press release that Qualcomm has filed a complaint for alleged patent infringement against Nokia Corporation and Nokia Inc. in San Diego apparently involving some 12 alleged essential patents.
Nokia is yet to receive a copy of the complaint, and analyze the details, and therefore cannot comment on the substantive aspects of the claims.
Nokia is disappointed Qualcomm has taken this step given they have yet to engage in any licensing negotiations concerning these matters. With respect to the patents alleged to be essential to the GSM/GPRS/EDGE standards, Qualcomm has a duty to license those patents on fair, reasonable and non-discriminatory terms. Qualcomm has not provided Nokia with any proposed terms for a license in compliance with its obligations.
Companies with essential and valid patents must agree to license those patents on fair, reasonable and non-discriminatory terms. It is quite unusual for a company to institute litigation before discussing such terms. Nokia is concerned that Qualcomm continues to disregard its obligations to offer to license its alleged essential patents on fair, reasonable and non-discriminatory terms. The timing of this lawsuit and the comments of Qualcomm’s general counsel that a cooperative resolution of these issues is unlikely, when the patents have not been verified and licensing terms have not yet been offered or discussed, is completely inconsistent with the basic licensing principles to which Qualcomm is obligated.
Nokia will analyze Qualcomm’s claims when it obtains the complaint and will defend itself in this action to ensure that its rights are fully protected.
We also note the timing of this action in relation to the recent request by Nokia and five other companies for the European Commission to investigate Qualcomm’s licensing practices [see previous story].