Wednesday, August 01, 2012

(BN) InterDigital Wins U.S. Appeal in Patent Fight With Nokia (1)

Aug. 1 (Bloomberg) -- InterDigital Inc. won an appeals court ruling reviving its effort to force Nokia Oyj to pay patent royalties on the third generation of mobile-phone technology. InterDigital soared as much as 25 percent on the decision.

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit today overturned a U.S. International Trade Commission decision that cleared Nokia of claims it infringed InterDigital patents, and sent the case back to the agency for further review. The decision was posted on the court's website.

The commission "erred in construing certain critical claim terms in both patents," the appeals court said. The patents in the case, first filed in 2007, cover power control and high- speed data transmission, InterDigital contends.

InterDigital has said it asked the ITC to block imports of Nokia's 3G phones because the Espoo, Finland-based company refuses to pay patent royalties on networks that allow mobile- phone users to hold videoconferences, download music and browse the Internet. Patent royalties accounted for almost all of the $301.7 million in revenue InterDigital reported last year.

InterDigital rose $4.86, or 18 percent, to $32.16 at 11:11 a.m. and traded for as much as $34.10 in Nasdaq Stock Market trading.

Commission Decision

In the ITC case, the trade commission sided with Nokia, saying the patents weren't infringed. Nokia, whose sales have declined amid smartphone competition from companies including Apple Inc., had also claimed the InterDigital patents were invalid.

InterDigital filed a second complaint at the ITC against Nokia, as well as ZTE Corp. and Huawei Technologies Co., accusing the Chinese phone-equipment makers of infringing patents related to 3G wireless technology. A hearing in that case is scheduled for October in Washington.

InterDigital, based in King of Prussia, Pennsylvania, said in its annual report that it received royalties from more than half of all 3G mobile devices sold last year, including ones from Samsung Electronics Co., Apple, Research In Motion and HTC Corp.

Nokia had a license with InterDigital for second-generation and some third-generation technology that expired in 2006. Nokia paid $253 million in a settlement reached in 2006. The companies were unable to reach a new agreement, InterDigital has said.

The case is InterDigital Communications v. ITC, 2010-1093, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit (Washington). The ITC case is In the Matter of Certain 3G Mobile Handsets and components thereof, 337-613, U.S. International Trade Commission (Washington).

The pending ITC case is In the Matter of Wireless Devices with 3G Capabilities, 337-800, ITC in Washington.


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