Thursday, December 5, 2013

German court postpones ruling on Nokia v. HTC case over key USB-related patent

A spokeswoman for the Munich I Regional Court confirmed to me today that the court's 21th Civil Chamber has postponed (on rather short notice, I must say) a decision in a Nokia v. HTC case scheduled for tomorrow (December 6) by two weeks (i.e., to December 20). Based on how the September trial went, Nokia appeared reasonably likely to win a German patent injunction against HTC's Android-based devices over EP1246071 on a "method of configuring electronic devices", which is not a standard-essential patent but covers a key feature related to USB connections between desktop computers and mobile devices.

This is already the second postponement of the decision, which may or may not be a final ruling (the court could also announce a procedural order). It was originally scheduled for November 8.

This week the United States Department of Justice and the European Commission cleared the Microsoft-Nokia deal, and the England and Wales High Court entered a UK injunction against various HTC devices including the One mini. Another German patent win (Nokia already has a German injunction in force, but it has not brought about a settlement) could add very significant settlement pressure.

I plan to attend, and report on, the December 20 announcement.

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