Will the next major patent fight occur between Nokia and Apple?

Will the next big patent fight occur between Nokia and Apple? Nokia filed a lawsuit in U.S. court last week, claiming Apple has infringed on 10 Nokia-owned patents that cover technologies such as wireless data transfer and span WCDMA, GSM and WiFi technologies.

Analysts said Apple could be forced to cough up as much as $1 billion royalties paid to Nokia if it loses the lawsuit. Most of these lawsuits, however, are settled out of court. The action comes as Apple reported a surge in iPhone sales and financial results. Meanwhile, Nokia saw its smartphone share slip in the third quarter.

Neil Mawston, an analyst with Strategy Analytics, said Apple could have to pay Nokia between $200 million and $1 billion for patents used in 34 million iPhones shipped so far. During the last quarter alone, Apple sold 7.4 million iPhones for an average sales price of $566, Strategy Analytics said.

Nokia along with Ericsson and Qualcomm are major mobile wireless patent holders. "It is almost inconceivable that someone can produce a mobile phone without using Nokia patented technologies," said Ben Wood, research director at CCS Insight in a Reuters article.

For more:
- see this Reuters article

Related articles:
Qualcomm, Nokia reach new patent agreement, end years of bitter disputes
AT&T activates 3.2M iPhones in Q3, hints at end to exclusivity
Nokia shocks market, posts $834M loss

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