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HTC sued by Nokia over remote activation of a device using SMS

Posted: , posted by Alan F.

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HTC sued by Nokia over remote activation of a device using SMS
Just three days after Nokia won an injunction from HTC in the same courthouse (Germany's Mannheim Regional) over a power saving patent, the two were back at it again on Friday with Nokia accusing HTC of infringing on EP0879538. That is a patent for a "mobile terminal having network services activation through the use of point-to-point short message service" which covers the feature of sending messages from a particular network (such as a corporate network) to a wireless device which then activates or deactivates certain programs or features based on what the message instructs it to do. In other words, the patent allows someone to send a text message that tells the receiving device what features to activate and which ones to deactivate.

The court, which seemed to take a neutral stance at the beginning, was starting to see things Nokia's way. It all revolved around the definition of the word network. Some of Nokia's patents date back to the mid 1990's when the word network referred to a telecommunication network. HTC argues that the patents therefore do not cover today's modern network. The Mannheim court has agreed with HTC's interpretation in past cases, and was not willing to broaden the term network to include telecommunications and internet service. On the other hand, Nokia's patent doesn't say telecommunication's network, it just says network. HTC could say that this means the patent should be defined by what a network was at the time that the patent was issued. Nokia's attorney told the court that the patent covers the end user whose device is controlled by the SMS message and the network being used doesn't matter. A decision will be announced on May 17th, so circle that date in your calendar.

source: FOSSPatents

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