Nokia to Google: Stop making frivolous complaints

Nokia's fired back at Google, after the latter company filed a complaint against the phone manufacturer and one of its partners, Microsoft, yesterday with the European Commission. The company went so far as to say Google's filing "[wastes] the commission's time and resources on such a frivolous complaint."

Florian Mueller of FOSS Patents deconstructed Nokia's response passage-by-passage, stating the company's response is factually correct. According to Mueller, "Google's allegations are far too vague to give the impression that this is a good use of regulatory resources." Mueller goes on to state that Google may merely be playing a "political game," creating this filing against Nokia and Microsoft with the hopes the commission will investigate Google's claims so it won't appear to be biased against the Internet search giant.

Mueller, who has consulted with Microsoft regarding patent matters such as this, specifically called out Google and Motorola's FRAND patent abuse, saying the company has abused standard-essential patents in cases against Microsoft and Apple. He went on to say that just because Google is being investigated for its patent abuse doesn't mean that every complaint of patent abuse is warranted.

The full text of Nokia's official statement is as follows:

Though we have not yet seen the complaint, Google’s suggestion that Nokia and Microsoft are colluding on intellectual property rights is wrong. Both companies have their own intellectual property portfolios and strategies and operate independently.

Nokia has made regular patent divestments over the last five years. In each case, any commitments made for standards essential patents transfer to the acquirer and existing licenses for the patents continue. Had Google asked us, we would have been happy to confirm this, which could then have avoided them wasting the commission's time and resources on such a frivolous complaint.

We agree with Google that Android devices have significant IP infringement issues, and would welcome constructive efforts to stop unauthorised use of Nokia intellectual property. Nokia has an active licensing program with more than 40 licensees. Companies who are not yet licensed under our standard essential patents should simply approach us and sign up for a license.

In its complaint with the European Commission, Google stated Nokia and Microsoft had transferred 2,000 patents to MOSAID, a company that routinely makes money by requesting patent licensing or seeking litigation from companies that infringe on patents. Both Nokia and Microsoft have stated they were not acting with one another regarding any patent transfers. Mueller noted that Google has transferred its own patents to MOSAID just last year, however.

Sources: Reuters, FOSS Patents, The Verge

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