Nokia filed complaints against Qualcomm in Germany and the Netherlands requesting that the Qualcomm's European patents be exhausted on products in Europe that contain Texas Instrument's chipsets. Analysts say Nokia's suit is a preemptive strike on an expected WCDMA patent suit that Qualcomm will bring against Nokia some time between April and September. Nokia said if its complaints succeed, Qualcomm will be prevented from enforcing certain patents in the region that relate to Nokia including those TI chipsets in its handsets.
Of course, Nokia and Qualcomm are already engaged in heated courtroom battles: In November 2005 Qualcomm filed a complaint in San Diego that alleged Nokia infringed on 11 of its patents. In May 2006 it filed a similar suit in the U.K. Come June 2006 Qualcomm filed a complaint with the ITC that Nokia was infringing on six of its patents. By November of 2006 the two companies said a renewal deal for the licensing Qualcomm technology for Nokia is "unlikely". In February 2007 a judge stayed the Nokia-Qualcomm case until further notice, but Qualcomm CEO Paul Jacobs said its MediaFLO deal with Nokia-friendly carrier AT&T/Cingular Wireless could help with the Nokia lawsuit. So far, it looks like neither side is budging.
For more on the latest Nokia-Qualcomm legal battle:
- see this WSJ article (sub. req.)