Feeds

Yet another iPhone patent lawsuit

Nokia proxy puts Cupertino in the crosshairs, Redmond on the spot

Top 5 reasons to deploy VMware with Tegile

A Luxembourg company called Core Wireless has launched a patent lawsuit against Apple, claiming that its patents, which cover communication protocols, are breached by any device that uses 2G, 3G or 4G standards.

The suit, which was filed in the Eastern Texas District on February 29 before Justice Leonard Davis, is based on a portfolio of 2,000 patents assembled by Core Wireless from Nokia. Its lawsuit alleges infringement of eight of these patents, which Core Wireless says are “fundamental” to cellular technology.

Core Wireless is a patent hoarder. Last year, it was acquired by another hoarder, Mosaid Technologies, which itself was bought by Sterling Partners. The sale agreement allows the company to keep one-third of the income it generates from enforcing the patents, with the remainder returned to the original filers.

However, since the lawsuit covers basic cellular technologies, it probably raises an interesting issue for another company with an interest in the Nokia patents: Microsoft.

Although Mosaid’s acquisition announcement didn’t mention Redmond, while fending off a takeover attempt last year by Wi-LAN Inc, Mosaid named Microsoft as a royalty recipient in its deal with Nokia.

While Nokia has form in suing Apple – last June, Cupertino paid an undisclosed sum to settle a dispute running since 2009 – Microsoft has been trying to paint itself as a patent “good guy”.

In 2010, Microsoft asked a US court to slap Motorola for refusing FRAND (fair reasonable and non-discriminatory) licensing for its patents. Last month, Redmond took its complaints to the European Commission.

However, even if the lawsuit isn’t welcome in Microsoft’s PR operation, it’s inevitable, since the terms on which Core Wireless holds the patents demand that it pursue them. Core Wireless isn’t only obliged to return two-thirds of what it reaps in lawsuits to Nokia and Microsoft: it’s also subject to performance requirements to keep the deal intact.

Microsoft has told The Register it has only a passive interest in Core Wireless.

“Last year, Nokia sold patents to Mosaid. We paid for a license to those patents. As part of that transaction, we also received a passive financial interest in future revenue generated by Mosaid from the licensing of those patents to others,” a Microsoft spokesperson told El Reg

Intelligent flash storage arrays

More from The Register

next story
Ex-US Navy fighter pilot MIT prof: Drones beat humans - I should know
'Missy' Cummings on UAVs, smartcars and dying from boredom
Facebook, Apple: LADIES! Why not FREEZE your EGGS? It's on the company!
No biological clockwatching when you work in Silicon Valley
The 'fun-nification' of computer education – good idea?
Compulsory code schools, luvvies love it, but what about Maths and Physics?
Doctor Who's Flatline: Cool monsters, yes, but utterly limp subplots
We know what the Doctor does, stop going on about it already
'Cowardly, venomous trolls' threatened with TWO-YEAR sentences for menacing posts
UK government: 'Taking a stand against a baying cyber-mob'
Happiness economics is bollocks. Oh, UK.gov just adopted it? Er ...
Opportunity doesn't knock; it costs us instead
Sysadmin with EBOLA? Gartner's issued advice to debug your biz
Start hoarding cleaning supplies, analyst firm says, and assume your team will scatter
prev story

Whitepapers

Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Cloud and hybrid-cloud data protection for VMware
Learn how quick and easy it is to configure backups and perform restores for VMware environments.
Three 1TB solid state scorchers up for grabs
Big SSDs can be expensive but think big and think free because you could be the lucky winner of one of three 1TB Samsung SSD 840 EVO drives that we’re giving away worth over £300 apiece.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.