Print 27 comment(s) - last by Alexvrb.. on Aug 11 at 7:33 PM

Patents go towards a mobile firm who recent merged with a well-known patent troll whose already sued Google once

How much do 500 patents covering complex third and fourth generation wireless algorithms and hardware go for these days?  The answer, for cash-strapped Finnish phonemaker Nokia Oyj. (HEX:NOK1V) is apparently $22M USD.

Nokia sold the patents to Vringo.  Vringo was founded in 2006 as a mobile software firm, and has specialized in delivering content to mobile devices.  However, in 2012 it switched gears, merging with Innovate/Protect Inc. a notorious patent monger/non-practicing entity (NPE). That company in 2011 successfully sued Google Inc. (GOOG), AOL, IAC/InterActive Corp. (IACI), Gannett Comp. (GCI), and Target Corp. (TGT), among others, using a pair of patents acquired from near-defunct search site Lycos.

Of the 500 patents handed to the "troll", 109 are U.S. patents.  And just to eliminate any ambiguity, Vringo said it was eager to soon start on a campaign of lawsuits and forced licensing.

The NPE estimates it could make $31.2M USD from Nokia's patents, almost a 50 percent return on its investment.

Nokia has a history of being a chaotic-bringer in the world of intellectual property.  The company personally started the mobile patent war by suing Apple, Inc. (AAPL) in 2009, eventually reaching a favorable settlement.  More recently it has transferred some patents (at no charge) to affiliated non-practicing entities (trolls) to sue its smartphone rivals.

Given the filing dates, Vringo says the patents should be good for another 6.7 years, on average.

One of the U.S. foremost senior intellectual property experts -- Judge Richard A. Posner, a sitting judge on the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals who occasionally moonlights as a judge in Chicago's U.S. District Court, Northern District of Illinois -- recently declared that the U.S. intellectual property system was "broken", singling out non-practicing entities and junk software patents as signs of its demise.

Source: The Wall Street Journal

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By joebrooks on 8/9/12, Rating: 0
RE: Jesus.
By Daneel_ on 8/10/2012 2:48:11 AM , Rating: 4
Please '6' this.

The stories are generally decent, which is why I still come here, but the lack of proofing severely detracts from the professionalism of the site.

RE: Jesus.
By TakinYourPoints on 8/10/12, Rating: 0
RE: Jesus.
By whitt107 on 8/10/2012 3:49:10 PM , Rating: 2
but... but... then there would be no typos to make fun of... :(

Yeah, it's difficult to take dailytech as a serious professional news site with articles filled with so many errors.

(ok, and I'm sure there's many errors in what I wrote but this is a comment post...)

RE: Jesus.
By anactoraaron on 8/10/2012 8:50:29 AM , Rating: 5
Who still reads the articles? I only read the comments. Reading the articles gives me migraines - especially ones written by Tiffany.

RE: Jesus.
By TakinYourPoints on 8/10/12, Rating: 0
RE: Jesus.
By joebrooks on 8/10/2012 8:43:12 PM , Rating: 2
Lol. The only reason I chose bring this up here is because there are two errors in the very first sentence, and I had to re-read it two or three times to identify them. Made me not want to bother with the rest of the article.

Death to Nokia
By Belard on 8/10/2012 9:04:42 AM , Rating: 2
More of a reason that NOKIA must die.

Patent trolls must also die. If a company buys a patent that has no ability to actually do anything with the patent, perhaps they should only be force to sell it to a company that can.

PS: I have some patents... who can I call?

RE: Death to Nokia
By bug77 on 8/10/2012 10:11:00 AM , Rating: 2
More of a reason that NOKIA must die.

It's not like it has any choice. Unless Microsoft keeps pumping money, Nokia is pretty much done.

RE: Death to Nokia
By Reclaimer77 on 8/10/2012 10:43:50 AM , Rating: 2
Yeah hows that Windows Phone working out for ya there lol.

Hmmm do I appeal to 60% of the market and go with Android, or 2% and go with Windows Phone...

RE: Death to Nokia
By bug77 on 8/10/2012 10:51:27 AM , Rating: 2
There is some reason behind that: huge risk, huge potential gain. However, they went all in and more than a year later have very little to show in return.

RE: Death to Nokia
By Alexvrb on 8/11/2012 7:33:20 PM , Rating: 2
I probably would have bought one if Verizon carried the Lumia 900. If they were Android phones they'd sell just about as poorly. If you're not Samsung, you're probably not making a ton of money off selling Android handsets. Just like RIM, if they started selling me too Android handsets with (phanspeak) "not enoguh cores LOLOLOL" nobody would want them.

Short Sighted
By KPOM1 on 8/10/2012 7:40:38 AM , Rating: 2
Nokia is selling off its most valuable assets for peanuts now. They are making themselves less and less attractive to a possible suitor. And on top of that, they aren't selling the patents to actual users, but instead to patent trolls.

RE: Short Sighted
By Targon on 8/10/2012 8:00:52 AM , Rating: 4
Which SHOULD invalidate the patents right away. The whole purpose of the patent system is to give developers a chance to bring products to market, and if a company has no desire to bring product to market, their patents SHOULD just be invalidated.

Why does this work?
By leviathan05 on 8/10/2012 8:52:39 AM , Rating: 2
Aren't most judgements in IP cases valued at some measure of revenue or profits that the patent-holder lost due to infringement? If so, how can an NPE be spearheading a legal campaign when it was never likely to see any profits from the implementation of the patent in the first place?

If I/P Inc. can't prove damages, the suit should be summarily dismissed, and I/P Inc. should be required to cover court and legal fees as a penalty for wasting everyone's time.

RE: Why does this work?
By bupkus on 8/10/2012 10:52:15 AM , Rating: 2
<perverse logic>The money lost will be the investments to buy those patents. They must get a return on those investments or they will suffer a loss.</perverse logic>

RE: Why does this work?
By ProZach on 8/10/2012 2:47:24 PM , Rating: 2
Sure, an argument with supporting evidence can be persuasive toward a favorable decision. In this case, the troll's proof of sale and a little tidbit such as, "Nokia lacked the resources to protect its IP," or whatever these couch potatoes decide to use as a rationale.

BTW- I'm not arguing, I'm agreeing with your choice of calling it perverse logic.

Only thing stopping this troll for a "return on its investment" is that (however unlikely) the judges get sick of mobile companies using up too much court time and suspend these types of patent/trademark cases until something gets reformed or revised- don't ask me what, not my area of expertise.

Oh dear.
By ritualm on 8/9/2012 10:21:43 PM , Rating: 2
Stephen Elop must have never heard of "don't feed the trolls".

Irony will be Vringo sues Nokia over these patents it just bought from Euroland.

RE: Oh dear.
By sprockkets on 8/9/2012 10:39:16 PM , Rating: 2
Vringo is obligated to share some of the income generated on these patents to Nokia.

destructive highlife
By Mike Acker on 8/10/2012 8:10:02 AM , Rating: 3
while these patent trolls are running around in high-price cars living the highlife the rest of us end up paying a premimum for equipment and services that are needed in society today.

patent/copyright trolls should be prosecuted under RICO law

Just die!
By danjw1 on 8/10/2012 12:02:40 PM , Rating: 3
Nokia is a dying company, so why do they feel they need to take the rest of the industry with them? How about selling the patents to someone who would actually practice them? Anyone who buys a Nokia phone at this point, is supporting patent trolls.

Conspiracy theory No 1
By Tony Swash on 8/10/12, Rating: -1
RE: Conspiracy theory No 1
By bug77 on 8/10/2012 10:54:36 AM , Rating: 3
You do know that WP8 upgrade for a WP7 set makes little sense, don't you? What do you do with multithreading support on a single core device or with SD card support on a phone that has none? There would be some gains, but they'd be minimal anyway.

RE: Conspiracy theory No 1
By Reclaimer77 on 8/10/12, Rating: -1
RE: Conspiracy theory No 1
By bug77 on 8/10/2012 12:01:20 PM , Rating: 2
I was just referring to the apparent problem of not upgrading WP7 sets to WP8. As you have noticed, WP7 phones have been behind their times from the start. While technically Microsoft could put WP8 on them, there would be very little benefit it doing so.
Tony was depicting this a fiasco whereas, if you take a step back and look at the bigger picture, it is only expected.

RE: Conspiracy theory No 1
By ritualm on 8/10/2012 12:21:10 PM , Rating: 2
Very simple reason, actually. It had everything to do with the settlement terms Microsoft reached with the US Department of Justice in the previous decade. There was an entire oversight board installed at Redmond that can dictate what can/not go into its products - it effectively hamstrung whatever MS wanted to do on a whim.

That oversight board expired around this time last year.

RE: Conspiracy theory No 1
By Tony Swash on 8/10/12, Rating: 0
"So if you want to save the planet, feel free to drive your Hummer. Just avoid the drive thru line at McDonalds." -- Michael Asher

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