Nokia Is Suing Google Over Patents (Again)

By: Zach Walton - July 2, 2012

The Galaxy Nexus is a super sleek Android phone that many people couldn’t wait to get a hold of. Then came Apple (again) suing Google and claiming that the Galaxy Nexus infringed upon their patents. All that bad news led to even worse news when a judge granted Apple an injunction to stop the only real competition they faced. Thank goodness that awesome tablet, the Nexus 7, is in the clear, right? Right?

My blind optimism towards the tech industry has failed me again as Nokias has announced that Google and Asus have violated their bought and paid for hard-earned patents in regards to Wi-Fi.

According to The Inquirer, the patent in question deals with the IEEE 802.11 Wi-Fi standard that most wireless devices utilize in their day-to-day activities. Nokia, the Godfather of mobile handsets, licenses out the patent in question to more than 40 licensees. They are shocked that Google and Asus weren’t already licensees and are even more shocked that they didn’t just simply ask to sign up as a licensee.

Thankfully, it appears that Nokia is only asking for that – they only want Google and Nokia to sign up for a license under their standard essential patents. Sure, it would cost Google and Asus a chunk of change to become licensees, but it’s probably less than what a legal battle would cost. Besides, I wasn’t lying when I said that Nokia was the Godfather of mobile handsets. A court would be likely to agree with them more than Google or Asus.

Nokia is no stranger to their power over the mobile handset patent portfolio to their advantage. The company filed lawsuits against Google’s other OEM partners like HTC last month. It should also be noted that they’re already suing Google for an entirely different reason as well. Google accused the European company of being in cahoots with Microsoft to undermine Android and Nokia fired back at Google claiming that Android violated their patents.

Look, this is just getting out of hand. Can’t we all just agree that patent lawsuits are a waste of time and money? They accomplish nothing besides delaying a product reaching retail because one company is scared that the other company’s product is going to cut into their sales. You can only make a smartphone in so many different ways. Apple, Nokia, Google and everybody should have realized this by now.

Zach Walton

About the Author

Zach WaltonZach Walton is a Writer for WebProNews. He specializes in gaming and technology. Follow him on Twitter, StumbleUpon, Pinterest, and Google+ +Zach Walton

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  • Craig

    A patent lawsuit being brought to court takes two sides.

    The side that is just protecting it’s rights afforded to patent owners, however they became the ‘owner’ and, the side that ignored or didn’t know about the patent.

    Patent lawsuits could be a thing of the past if companies implementing international standards that include technology covered by essential patents were to license the essential technology as required.

    Typically, any technology based international standard includes in the standard a list of technologies involved in the standard which are patented, often whether ‘essential’ or not.

    That’s not to say any given essential patents list at any given point in time is complete but in this case, it at least covers the technology involved in the claims being made by Nokia.

    As an aside, denigrating an operator of a patent pool shows that a better understanding would be useful of how patents are owned and assigned, specifically when dealing with international standards.

    • Zach Walton

      I don’t think I’m being unfair to Nokia. I understand that they’re fully within their right to take Google and Asus to task over a patent they own, but it just seems like companies that are on the ropes, like Nokia, or those that want to stay on top, like Apple, are the only ones being overtly aggressive with patents these days.

      I do agree that there should be international standards for the technologies that an overwhelming amount of devices use. It would cut down on the stress that our current legal system faces due to every tech company throwing their legal weight around. It would also lead to increased innovation as companies wouldn’t have to worry about their new awesome technology violating one little tiny patent that some company filed for ages ago and has no intention of using it beyond suing companies with it.