In a major blow to HTC, Nokia has been granted an injunction by the Amsterdam district court over the technology used in the HTC One, the Taiwanese company’s flagship smartphone.
The lawsuit involves the use of a pair of high-amplitude microphones in the One, which Nokia had alleged was a breach of a non-disclosure agreement between them and ST Microelectronics, the manufacturer of the component. The high-amplitude microphone of the HTC One uses the same dual-membrane components that have been used in the likes of the Nokia Lumia 720, which has just hit stores around the world.
The Finnish mobile phone maker applied for a preliminary injunction and blamed ST Microelectronics. Nokia claims that the microphone components were invented by and manufactured exclusively for them.
More trouble for HTC One?
“The Amsterdam District Court has today granted Nokia’s request for a preliminary injunction against the supply to HTC of microphone components invented by and manufactured exclusively for Nokia. Nokia filed this action after it discovered these components in the HTC One; HTC has no license or authorisation from Nokia to use these microphones or the Nokia technologies from which they have been developed,” a Nokia statement on the matter said.
The statement goes on to say that HTC mislead audiences with promotional material for the One. “In its marketing materials, HTC claims that its HDR microphone is a key feature for the HTC One, but it is Nokia technology, developed exclusively for use in Nokia products. This is one of the latest in a number of cases brought by Nokia to end HTC’s unauthorised use of Nokia’s inventions.”
Nokia and HTC, despite being a beleaguered duo in the smartphone race, have been slugging it out in courts around the world. Nokia alleges that more than 40 of its patents have been used without license by HTC in Germany, the US and the UK. There’s already an injunction in Germany against HTC phones that were found to have violated some of the Finnish company’s patents.
“The latest case, on Nokia patent EP 1 579 613 B1 was filed in Mannheim, Germany on April 16. Once again, Nokia calls on HTC to compete using its own innovations and to stop copying from Nokia,” the statement added.
In response, HTC said it was disappointed with the decision and will explore all options. “We are considering whether it will have any impact on our business and we will explore alternative solutions immediately.”
This latest situation only serves to hamper HTC’s plans with the One further. The company is already struggling with delays in production for its flagship.
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