RIM pays Nokia to settle patent dispute

21 Dec 2012
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Struggling smartphone makers Nokia and BlackBerry reach an agreement on patent dispute

Nokia has settled its patent dispute with fellow struggler Research in Motion, with the BlackBerry maker agreeing to pay to use Nokia's technology.

Terms of the agreement were kept confidential, but Nokia said it included a one-time payment to be booked in the fourth quarter, as well as ongoing fees, all to be paid by RIM.

Nokia is one of the industry's top patent holders, having invested €45 billion in mobile research and development over the past two decades.

It has been trying to make use of that legacy to ensure its survival, amid a fall in sales as well as cash. The Finnish firm is battling to recover lost ground in the lucrative smartphone market to the likes of Apple and Samsung.

This agreement demonstrates Nokia's industry leading patent portfolio and enables us to focus on further licensing opportunities in the mobile communications market

The agreement with RIM settles all existing patent litigation between the two companies, Nokia said, adding similar disputes with HTC and ViewSonic are still ongoing.

"This agreement demonstrates Nokia's industry leading patent portfolio and enables us to focus on further licensing opportunities in the mobile communications market," said Paul Melin, Nokia's chief intellectual property officer.

Nokia has earned around €500 million a year from patent royalties in key areas of mobile telephony.

Some analysts have said it could earn hundreds of millions more if it can negotiate with more companies successfully. Analysts estimated its June 2011 settlement with Apple was worth hundreds of millions of euros.

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