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Electronics Production | November 08, 2005

Qualcomm files GSM patent<br>infringement suit against Nokia

Qualcomm Incorporated and its wholly owned subsidiary, SnapTrack, Inc., filed suit on November 4 against Nokia Corporation and Nokia Inc. in federal court in San Diego for infringement of eleven of Qualcomm`s patents and one patent owned by SnapTrack.
Qualcomm`s lawsuit includes patents that are essential for the manufacture or use of equipment that complies with the GSM, GPRS and EDGE cellular standards and other patents that are infringed by Nokia's products. Patents that are essential to a standard are those that must necessarily be infringed to comply with the requirements of the standard. Qualcomm`s complaint states that Nokia is infringing Qualcomm`s patents by making or selling products in the United States that comply with the GSM family of standards. Qualcomm seeks an injunction against Nokia's continuing sale of infringing products and monetary damages.

Demand from cell phone users for data services and multimedia features has been growing dramatically since the advent of second-generation (2G) cellular technologies. The ability to provide better data performance is one of the primary reasons that the wireless industry has selected CDMA technology for nearly all third-generation (3G) cellular standards and systems. Faced with this demand and spurred by competition from CDMA systems, 2G standards, such as GSM, have been evolved to support improved data capabilities. These evolutions of GSM—first GPRS and later EDGE—have adopted patented innovations developed by Qualcomm originally for use in CDMA systems to: achieve higher data rates, increase spectral efficiency, enhance capacity, improve resistance to interference, permit access to packet switched networks, and facilitate multimedia distribution. Nokia's GSM, GPRS and EDGE standards-compliant products unavoidably infringe Qualcomm patents surrounding these inventions that have become essential to the GSM family of standards. Six of the patents in Qualcomm complaint against Nokia were also asserted in the complaint that Qualcomm filed against Broadcom Corporation on July 11, 2005.

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