HTC Drops Stolen HDR Mic Technology from "One" Flagship Smartphone
May 2, 2013 10:21 AM
comment(s) - last by
Judge in Netherlands says HTC didn't realize supplier stole technology so HTC can use up existing mic stock
In a somewhat unusual move, HTC Corp. (
) has seemingly conceded it made a mistake in terms of intellectual property and has dropped a key feature of its
HTC One smartphone
The company had contracted Geneva, Switzerland-based STMicroelectrics N.V. (
) to provide a higher quality microphone to it. The result was a "dual membrane HDR", which promised to capture subtle details of audio and speech, similar to bulkier studio mics of the past.
But it was discovered in teardowns by Nokia Oyj. (
) that STMicroelectronics
had apparently stolen the mic technology
used in Lumia phones from Nokia. Nokia dubbed the patented technology "high amplitude audio capture".
While HTC may have been an unwitting party to this apparently blatant theft and transfer of intellectual property, it was still struck by a Nokia trade lawsuit in the Netherlands. Nokia was eyeing to roll out the ban in other regions, including the U.S. if HTC didn't act.
The HTC One'
Instead of fighting Nokia's claims, it appears HTC has conceded the fight, dropping the mic altogether.
HTC also clarifies the nature of the Netherlands ban in a statement, commenting that
misreported on the lawsuit, and that it was not sued. The suit only applied to STMicrolelectronics. And while the HTC One might have been banned if it had willfully continued to buy and use the microphones, it was allowed to use up its existing stock as the Netherlands judge said that HTC was unaware of the IP theft.
In light of several misleading stories regarding a recent injunction obtained by Nokia against STM (a supplier of components to HTC in The Netherlands) HTC looks to clarify the following points:
• Nokia has NOT obtained an injunction in The Netherlands, or anywhere else, against the HTC One.
• The Dutch proceedings were brought by Nokia solely against STM. HTC was not sued by Nokia in the Netherlands.
• The Dutch injunction prohibits STM from selling certain microphones to any company other than Nokia for a limited period.
• The judgment against STM states that HTC can continue to use microphones already purchased from STM in its products, because they were purchased in good-faith. Nokia's attempt to obtain a recall of microphones already sold to HTC failed.
• HTC will transition to improved microphone designs once its inventory of STM microphones is exhausted.
HTC appears to be relatively responsible in trying to promote patent cooperation between companies. Despite the controversial nature of software/user interface patents, it
pays royalties on every smartphone to Apple
, Inc. (
) for patented software technologies which its interface resembles.
This article is over a month old, voting and posting comments is disabled
Nokia is slow
5/2/2013 12:08:44 PM
Well Nokias move was justified, the judge reasonable, and HTC did the only sane thing: move on.
Sadly the customer is the one who suffers in the end.
But it shows two things for sure:
1. Nokia researchers are able to work on and with totally different stuff and invent great and versatile stuff.
2. Nokia is damn slow in selling their inventions in final products. Why was HTC able to produce a high end smartphone with this mic? And Nokia, the co-inventor, wasn't able, yet they had this tech since almost a year? That's sad, really sad.
So maybe Nokia should focus on just doing research, like IBM, because that's the thing they're really good at.
RE: Nokia is slow
5/2/2013 1:57:53 PM
...used in Lumia phones from Nokia.
Its currently in use, by Nokia, right now.
"It looks like the iPhone 4 might be their Vista, and I'm okay with that." -- Microsoft COO Kevin Turner
Nokia Wins Ban on HTC One in EU, Threatens to Sink Struggling Handsets
April 23, 2013, 8:58 AM
HTC Unveils Flagship 4.7" 1080p HTC One Smartphone
February 19, 2013, 12:47 PM
Apple and HTC Organize a Truce, Sign 10-Year Licensing Pact
November 11, 2012, 3:31 PM
HTC Agrees to Pay Microsoft Royalties on All Android Handsets
April 28, 2010, 8:58 AM
Quick Note: New "Windows" Branding for Microsoft's Smartphones is Leaked
September 15, 2014, 2:00 PM
Sony Abandons Android Upgrade Support for Year Old Xperia and 3 Others
September 15, 2014, 11:07 AM
Apple Racked Up 4 Million iPhone 6, iPhone 6 Plus Pre-orders Within 24 Hours
September 15, 2014, 9:54 AM
Despite Massive Failure of Apple Store Website, "Record Number" of iPhone 6 Pre-orders Received
September 12, 2014, 1:19 PM
Quick Note: Motorola Set to Release Unlocked, “Pure Edition” of Second Gen Moto X
September 12, 2014, 12:37 PM
Grand Theft Auto V for Xbox One, PS4 Launches Nov 18; PC Version Lands Jan 27
September 12, 2014, 9:04 AM
Most Popular Articles
Apple Announces Its Smartwatch: The $349 Apple Watch
September 9, 2014, 2:09 PM
Quick Note: Buy an Xbox One Sept 7-13, Get a Free Game
September 4, 2014, 10:42 AM
Apple Announces 4.7" iPhone 6, 5.5" iPhone 6 Plus
September 9, 2014, 1:45 PM
T-Mobile Launches Un-carrier 7.0, Beefs Up Wi-Fi Calling
September 11, 2014, 2:56 PM
HTC Preps Nexus 9 With Nvidia K1 64-Bit "Denver" SoC, Android L Onboard
September 10, 2014, 10:21 PM
Latest Blog Posts
Space Terrorism is a Looming Threat For the United States
Apr 23, 2014, 7:47 PM
Facebook Aims to Provide Internet to "Every Person in the World" with Drones, Satellites
Apr 1, 2014, 10:20 AM
Retail Mobile Sites Experience Outages in Light of Simplexity's Bankruptcy
Mar 14, 2014, 8:48 AM
Tesla vs. BMW: Who Has the Safer EV?
Feb 1, 2014, 2:56 PM
Justice Leaks Details of Next HTC One Two Flagship Phone
Dec 5, 2013, 4:04 PM
More Blog Posts
Copyright 2014 DailyTech LLC. -
Terms, Conditions & Privacy Information