Patent licensing firm IPCom is gearing up for battle against Nokia and HTC, after European and German authorities confirmed the validity of one of its handset specific patent families.
The European Patent Office (EPO) and German Patent and Trademark Office last week ruled that IPCom’s patent family number 100 is ‘new and inventive’, so validating the firm’s claim that handset makers must license them. The core patent covers the basis for assigning channels to users of 3G mobile networks, granting priority to emergency services, and is thus essential for GSM and UMTS networks, IPCom states.
IPCom director, Bernhard Frohwitter, says courts in the UK and Germany have already ruled that Nokia and HTC infringe on the patent, and that the European and German confirmation of validity means the firm can renew its efforts to license the family.
“These decisions significantly strengthen our patent portfolio in Germany and the UK and all the other countries covered by the EPO,” he says, adding. “Companies which have not yet negotiated license agreements can continue to count on quickly coming to a fair agreement with us.”
The patent battle has already seen IPCom threaten to jail Nokia chief Stephen Elop in December, and order the seizure of HTC smartphones shipped into Germany in February.