Apple and Nokia drop lawsuits, strike multi-year patent license agreement

Over the years, Apple and Nokia have traded barbs in court after having served lawsuits on each other. Back in 2009, Nokia claimed that virtually all Apple devices violated its patents while more recently, Nokia and Sony were successful in a judgment against the Cupertino giant which was found guilty of infringing a ring-silencing patent last year. Apple later launched an attack of its own against Nokia just before Christmas, accusing it of colluding with patent assertion entities to “extract and extort exorbitant revenues unfairly and anti-competitively from Apple and other innovative suppliers of cell phones”.

Now, it appears that the two companies have buried the hatchet after signing a patent license and business collaboration agreement, effectively terminating all outstanding litigation with respect to intellectual property disputes.

In response to the outcome, Apple Chief Operating Office Jeff Williams said:

"We are pleased with this resolution of our dispute and we look forward to expanding our business relationship with Nokia."

Representing Nokia, President Basil Alwan commented that the "agreement will strengthen our collaboration" and that it also looks forward to supporting Apple.

As a result of the legal truce, Apple will again sell Nokia's digital health products, brought into its fold after the acquisition of Withings last year for $191 million, in both its physical and online shops. Furthermore, according to the statement, "Nokia will receive an up-front cash payment from Apple, with additional revenues during the term of the agreement."

While the finer details of the agreement have not been made public, Nokia will account for the increased licensing revenue according to its current practices. However, the deal is somewhat reminiscent of the one struck between Microsoft and Google back in 2015 when they agreed to stand down from all active patent disputes.

Source: Nokia, Apple | Original gavel image via Brian Turner / Flickr

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