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12.30.09

Nokia Expands Patent Strike Against Apple

Posted in Apple, Microsoft, Mono, Novell, Patents at 7:22 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Nokia logo with Apple

Summary: Nokia seemingly wants sanctions against Apple products (or big payments); Mono and patents revisited

THE Nokia-Apple patent fight is not exactly news [1, 2, 3], but Nokia is said to be taking it further to the ITC (sometimes the “embargo department”). Apart from this report from IDG we also have some reports in the English press, notably BBC and The Register:

Nokia has ramped up its legal fight against Apple, arguing that almost all of its products infringe Nokia patents.

 

Nokia has upped the ante in its patent-infringement battle against Apple by extending its accusations to cover “virtually all of [Apple's] mobile phones, portable music players, and computers,” according to a statement by the fiesty Finns.

Patents are certainly still somewhat of a disease, but the above is not about software (or not only about software). It is worth adding that for Mono, patent are not the main issue (although they too are an issue); it has always been a question of control. “Way More Than Just Patents,” says one person who explains why Mono needs to be avoided.

I hope everyone who has voiced concern over patent issues with Mono will read this article. It does an excellent job of explaining why the danger to Free software in Microsoft’s control of .Net technology is far more than just the patent threat. It is about who is in the driver’s seat of the technology – who is calling the shots. They can dictate the standards and the direction of the technology – all to the benefit of Microsoft and to the detriment of their competition (including FOSS).

The Linux Today crowd generally distrusts Mono, to say the least (see comments).

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4 Comments

  1. Needs Sunlight said,

    December 30, 2009 at 12:46 pm

    Gravatar

    Jorma Ollila is long gone from Nokia. Get over it.

    There are some talented people there, to be sure, but many of the management appear to have completely lost sight of the path to success that Jorma Ollila laid out. Self-inflicted injuries of software patents and Microsoft deals are indicators of problems. Some of it, like with the HTML5 scandal, can be traced to H.R. scandals which allow Nokia’s competitor, Microsoft, to retain insiders on the Nokia payroll. What it looks like from the outside, is that some insiders in Nokia can’t stand having a lead and are doing what they can to throw Microsoft tire spikes onto the race track.

    That and these insiders blaming all the bad moves on ‘shareholders’. Buckpassing never kept a company in the black, especially not in a competitive industry. Ericsson may be gone, but the market is still fierce with Apple and soon Google taking the lead.

    Roy Schestowitz Reply:

    They recently launched/reannounced that XP “netbook” they seemed so excited about at the time, but nobody in the press really cared. That was truly a strategic error.

    Are they still promoting Microsoft Office (Web version)? I’m sure Microsoft is loving those lawsuits against Apple, with whom Microsoft is cross-licensing after many disputes.

    Nokia put its weight behind Symbian for the same reason DRI had demand. Companies did not want to depend on Microsoft. Nokia needs to market Maemo and Qt more aggressively, not sign money-grabbing deals with Microsoft; it never worked for Novell or Corel.

    Needs Sunlight Reply:

    Like any other corporation, there is a lot of inert material. Nokia still has a lot of talented staff and even some talent still in management, which leaves it with a positive balance in that regard.

    I haven’t followed in great detail what’s going on in Nokia because it is annoying and stressful to see the grifters start to arrive, accumulate and cause damage. A “former” Microsoft intern, employee, or even consultant can be really toxic to an otherwise productive business in any role, especially if they worm their way into or influence management. The relicensing of Qt seems to be such a result. Under the dual-license Qt, users had to contribute to the pool, either with code or via licensing fees.

    Jorma Ollila made Nokia into a great mobile phone company by realizing the tremendous advantages both open source and open standards give. Maybe he can leverage his current position to salvage what’s left of Finlands higher education. That will have payoffs in ten years, but while that necessary work happens there is a here and now problem of what to do with the Microsofters and their ideological driven sabotage of education and business. It would be nice to be able to throw them over the fence a the Russian border, but Putin is trying to get rid of the same crowd himself.

    Roy Schestowitz Reply:

    I remember the OOXML machinations in Finland and also Gates’ visit… which ended up imprisoning many students. We have it documented here.

    It is sad that even Torvalds’ home nation is falling prey to convicted monopolists that ran rampant under Bush years.

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