Companies reach agreement in patent dispute

Daimler and Nokia have been arguing over patents for cell phone equipment in cars for years. Now the corporations have come to an agreement.

In the mobile communications patent dispute between the network equipment supplier Nokia Nokia share and the automaker Daimler Daimler share there is an out-of-court settlement. Both companies announced on Tuesday that they had signed a patent license agreement on the matter.

With this contract, Nokia is licensing mobile technology to Daimler and receiving payments in return. How high these are remained unknown. Upon request, Daimler announced that it welcomed the agreement – from an economic point of view and “because we would avoid long-term legal disputes with it”. Nokia described the joint agreement as an “important milestone”.

In this context, according to the company, all ongoing legal proceedings should also be ended with a settlement. This also includes the complaint that Daimler filed against Nokia with the EU Commission, it said. Neither company gave any details about the content of the comparison.

That’s what the argument is about

Nokia had accused Daimler of patent infringements in connection with mobile communications technology in the car and therefore sued for an injunction in various courts. Some of the first judgments had a different tenor. In November, the Düsseldorf Regional Court decided to ask the European Court of Justice in Luxembourg to clarify key issues in the dispute.

In essence, the dispute revolved around how so-called standard essential patents, the use of which is absolutely necessary for the use of the technology, are made available to all providers on fair terms and without discrimination.

Nokia took the view, among other things, of being able to freely decide at which level licenses are to be granted to whom – in other words, whether directly to the car manufacturers or to their individual suppliers. Daimler, on the other hand, was of the opinion that the suppliers should be able to license their products themselves directly.

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