Nokia is one step closer to a ban on the HTC One and all HTC's Android smart phones after another legal victory in the British courts.
Foss Patents reports that Justice Arnold of the England and Wales High Court ordered an injunction against HTC in a battle over patent, but did give HTC the chance to appeal on limited grounds. The injunction has been delayed until Friday, the deadline for HTC to apply for a wider-ranging appeal.
Nokia won the first round of the legal scrap in October, with similar cases going on in six countries around the world. Nokia has called for a ban on HTC phones and financial compensation for each phone sold. As a ban looms, HTC is likely, however, to pony up some cash and settle with Nokia -- yet another financial blow for the struggling Taiwanese company.
"HTC is pleased by the decision of the High Court of England and Wales to stay an injunction against certain chipsets, including those in our flagship HTC One," says HTC, "pending the outcome of our appeal against the validity and infringement of Nokia's EP 0 998 024 patent. Whilst the Court also granted an injunction that affects other third party chipsets, we have filed urgent application to appeal. In the meantime, we are working with our chip suppliers to explore alternative solutions . As always, HTC's primary focus is on supporting our customers and ensuring minimal disruption to them and our business. Rest assured that our award winning HTC One handset will be available as usual."
The contested patent is EP0998024 on a "modular structure for a transmitter and a mobile station", which relates to the modulator technology in phones that transmits data. HTC argues the kit in question is part of the Qualcomm chips installed in its phones, and as such should be covered by a deal between Qualcomm and Nokia in the US.
“Potentially this is a further blow to HTC given the challenging year it has already had," says industry expert Ben Wood of CCS Insight. "But right now this will have little impact as any injunction is delayed pending appeal. Both sides will doubtless continue the legal fight, as these sorts of battles characterise the mobile device landscape more and more.”
As part of its evidence, HTC has also thrown rivals under the bus, claiming that Apple, BlackBerry, Google, LG, Samsung and Sony also sell phones -- or, in Sony's case, a tablet -- with chips that also infringe the patent.
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