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Nokia sides with Apple in Samsung patent dispute

Apple makes a friend
Thu Mar 07 2013, 10:56
Apple iPhone fighting Samsung Galaxy SIII

FINNISH PHONE MAKER Nokia, in somewhat of a bizarre move, has come out in support for Apple in its ongoing patent dispute with Samsung.

Nokia has filed an an amicus brief on behalf of rival Apple, making it the first competing company to step out in support for the iPhone maker.

The brief asks Judge Lucy Koh to reconsider her decision and permit permanent injunctions on the sale of Samsung phones that were found to infringe Apple's patents. This follows the news that Judge Koh slashed Apple's $1bn damages award by $450m.

Given that the the Finnish phone firm's brief is being kept under wraps, it's still unclear as to what Nokia's motives are here, although we're guessing the fact that Microsoft is a shareholder in Apple might have something to do with it.

However a summary from Nokia said, "Nokia Corporation and Nokia Inc. respectfully move this Court for leave to file the attached brief amici curiae in support of reversal of the district court's order denying Apple's motion for a permanent injunction. Counsel for the parties were contacted and counsel for Apple consents to the motion but counsel for Samsung did not consent."

Nokia attorney Keith Broyles goes on to argue that Judge Koh made an error by ruling that Apple must establish a "causal nexus" between its patented feature and demand for its phones in order to secure a permanent injunction.

Broyles said that this "could cause wide-ranging damage to the United States patent protection landscape".

There's no denying that Nokia and Apple are rivals in the smartphone market, and the two firms even had their own court dustup back in 2009. However, it looks like the two competitors could be plotting to try to take down Samsung, which continues to dominate the smartphone market.

We've contacted Nokia to comment further, but have not heard back yet. µ


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