Nokia, Lenovo Settle Patent Dispute

The legal dust up between the world’s largest PC manufacturer Lenovo, and Finnish networking giant Nokia, has now ended.

Both companies announced on Wednesday that Nokia had “concluded a multi-year, multi-technology patent cross-license agreement with Lenovo.”

Lenovo is to make an undisclosed payment to Nokia to resolve the issue, and the terms are remaining confidential.

Settlement agreement

“The agreement resolves all pending patent litigation and other proceedings between the two parties, in all jurisdictions,” the announcement stated.

“We are delighted to have reached an agreement with Lenovo,” said Jenni Lukander, president of Nokia Technologies. “The agreement reflects Nokia’s decades-long investments in R&D and contributions to cellular and multimedia standards.”

“We appreciate, and very much respect, the constructive spirit Lenovo brought to our negotiations and look forward to working together to bring further innovation to their users around the world,” Lukander concluded.

“Our agreement with Nokia reflects the value of both Nokia’s technology leadership and Lenovo’s continued investment in 5G innovation,” noted John Mulgrew, chief intellectual property officer of Lenovo.

“The global accord struck will enable future collaboration between our companies for the benefit of customers worldwide,” Mulgrew added.

Nokia has first sued Lenovo back in 2019 over alleged infringement of 20 video-compression technology patents.

It was pursuing the Chinese firm legally in the United States, Brazil and India, as well as Germany.

Lenovo had counter sued Nokia in California.

Nokia said that it has built a patent portfolio thanks to more than €129 billion invested in R&D over the past two decades.

Its patent portfolio is said to be composed of around 20,000 patent families, including over 3,500 patent families declared essential to 5G.

Competition pressure

The move will be welcome news for both parties, and the payment from Lenovo will be appreciated by Nokia’s executives.

Nokia’s finances have been under pressure for years now, and in February 2020 a report suggested the firm was exploring its strategic options, including potential asset sales or mergers.

There is no doubt that Nokia is facing fierce competition, as it competes with the likes of Huawei, Ericsson, Cisco and Samsung in the 5G equipment sector.

Last month Nokia confirmed it will slash 10,000 jobs worldwide over the next two years, in an effort to invest more in its research capabilities, as it seeks to improve its 5G credentials against the likes of Huawei and Ericsson.

Tom Jowitt

Tom Jowitt is a leading British tech freelancer and long standing contributor to Silicon UK. He is also a bit of a Lord of the Rings nut...

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