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Apple and Nokia settle patent dispute

23rd May 2017

Apple and Nokia have reached a deal after a testy legal dispute over the Finnish company’s patents.

The two sides announced the agreement in a joint statement yesterday, five months after they had sued each other over royalty payments.

The deal will see Apple make a sizeable one-off payment, as well as future fees, for the use of Nokia’s technology. Analysts estimated the deal was worth hundreds of millions of pounds to Nokia, sending shares up by 7pc.

The company suffered immensely at the hands of the iPhone, and no longer makes handsets after selling its mobile business to Microsoft in 2013. While most of its revenue comes from telecoms infrastructure, it is seeking to bolster income from the valuable patents it still retains from its days as the world’s dominant mobile phone company.

After a long-running deal with Apple expired last year, Nokia sued it for violating 32 patents used in the iPhone. Apple sued back, calling Nokia a “patent troll” and saying it had refused to license the technology on a fair basis.

On Tuesday, the companies said they had settled all litigation and reached a new agreement. It will see Nokia’s healthcare gadgets return to Apple stores after they were removed last year, and the two companies said they might work together on healthcare initiatives.

Apple will pay Nokia an undisclosed sum and further revenues while the deal stands. Analysts at UBS estimate that Nokia will receive between €450m and €550m (£390m-£475m) from Apple.

 

“This is a meaningful agreement between Nokia and Apple,” said Maria Varsellona, Nokia’s chief legal officer. “It moves our relationship with Apple from being adversaries in court to business partners working for the benefit of our customers.”

Apple chief operating officer Jeff Williams said: “We are pleased with this resolution of our dispute and we look forward to expanding our business relationship with Nokia.”

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