HTC One Mini And HTC One Max Banned In The UK Due To Nokia Patent Infringement

Of all the great patent animosities that have raged in the smartphone world over the past couple of years, that between HTC and Nokia could be one of the most brutal.

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HTC One Mini and HTC One Max banned in the UK after Nokia wins patent battle

The continuing smartphone patent wars have left a couple of new casualties by the wayside, with the HTC One Mini and HTC One Max smartphones banned for sale in the UK after a judge ruled in favour of rival Nokia.
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The patent in question covered the “modulator structure for a transmitter and a mobile station” and applied to a whole range of HTC handsets. Judge Arnold ruled in favour of Nokia, with the infringing devices banned from sale from 6 December.

The ruling Judge spared the HTC One in respect to the evidence that an immediate ban would be 'catastrophic' for the company

Nokia has clarified that this ban refers to the HTC Desire X, HTC One XL, HTC One X, HTC One S and HTC One V, although Judge Arnold stayed the order against the HTC One as “the potential harm [of banning the handset] to HTC outweighs that to Nokia.”
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“HTC's evidence is that the consequences of an immediate injunction will be catastrophic for its UK business because the One is its flagship model. HTC paints a dramatic picture of what will happen,” said Arnold in the official ruling, first reported by Foss Patents.

HTC tried to argue that the infringement concerned just a “very small component” and that Nokia was only interested in the money

To this, judge Arnold responded by saying “All patent owners are only interested in money. The whole purpose of a patent is to enable the proprietor to extract money from exploitation of the patented invention.”

While this is bad news for HTC and good news for Nokia, the Taiwanese phone maker must have breathed a sigh of relief during today's ruling, as the judge ruled that the firm has until 6 December to appeal a potential ban on its flagship HTC One smartphone.

An official statement from HTC noted that they had filed “an urgent application to appeal

A HTC Spokesperson told TNW: “HTC is pleased by the decision of the High Court of England and Wales to stay an injunction against certain chipsets, including those in our flagship HTC One, pending the outcome of our appeal against the validity and infringement of Nokia’s EP 0 998 024 patent.

“Whilst the Court also granted an injunction that affects other third-party chipsets, we have filed urgent application to appeal. In the meantime, we are working with our chip suppliers to explore alternative solutions."

Customers look at HTC smartphones in a mobile phone shop in Taipei. - Reuters filepic

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"As always, HTC’s primary focus is on supporting our customers and ensuring minimal disruption to them and our business. Rest assured that our award-winning HTC One handset will be available as usual.”

The UK smartphone market was worth about $7 billion to vendors in 2012 and is projected to be worth $9 billion by the end of 2013

Apple and Samsung dominate with 39 per cent and 33 per cent market share respectively, with Nokia accounting for only 6 per cent and HTC only 3.

The ruling is especially difficult for HTC, as the UK represents its biggest European market, with the HTC One, HTC One Mini and One Max accounting for around 70 per cent of sales.

Customers hold bags containing their HTC One mobile phone purchases during the first day of public sales at Taman Anggrek Mall in Jakarta, June 8, 2013.

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