The Finnish telecommunications company, Nokia, has moved to court against OPPO, the Chinese consumer electronics company, in regards to patent infringement. Reported first by IAM, Nokia has filed complaints in multiple Asian and European countries, including, India, France, Germany, and the UK, for some of its standard-essential patents (SEPs) and non-SEPs including user interface and security features. FOSS Patents claims that eleven complaints in Mannheim, seven in Munich, and six in Dusseldorf regional courts of Germany have been registered in disagreement with OPPO.
Nokia and OPPO entered into a patent licensing agreement back in 2018 over a multi-year period for its 5G and other cellular communications patents. The parties did not indulge in revealing the agreement terms then, but GizChina.it, tagging the EPO(European Patent Office), reports that OPPO is obliged to pay €3 per phone to Nokia for producing and marketing the smartphones that use Nokia’s patents. Anyhow, the licensing agreement seems to have ended this year in June.
Reacting to the reports, Nokia stated that,
“We have been negotiating the renewal of our patent licensing agreement with OPPO, but unfortunately, they have rejected our fair and reasonable offers. Litigation is always our last resort, and we have offered to enter into independent and neutral arbitration to amicably resolve the matter. We still believe this would be the most constructive way forward.”
“OPPO respects and protects its own and third-party intellectual property rights, and has been committed to benign patent licensing cooperation in the industry. OPPO opposes unreasonable consultations such as using litigation as a tool.”
Interestingly, OPPO is also one of the licensees of Nokia’s OZO Audio technology for many of its OPPO Find X series and OPPO Reno series smartphones, which does not seem to be the roadblock here.
Nokia maintains a variety of SEPs and non-SEPs for 2G, 3G, 4G, 5G, WLAN, and multi-media technologies that it licenses to about 200 licensees. This year, the company settled its patent disputes with Lenovo and Daimler after arguing for years. Only time can tell that how it will unfold for OPPO.