Nokia has claimed that Apple has infringed one of its European patents for communications technology and wants the High Court to serve the US company with an injunction banning the company from infringing that patent, and further order Apple to "take all steps as are in their power to retrieve from the channels of distribution all products the sale, disposal or keeping of which would infringe [the patent]", according to legal papers seen by Out-Law.com.
The UK court action is part of a series of litigations between the two companies around the world.
Late last year Nokia filed legal papers before regional courts in Dusseldorf, Mannheim and Munich in Germany, and the US district court for the eastern district of Texas. It also raised legal proceedings against Apple in France, Finland, Italy, Sweden, Spain, the Netherlands, Hong Kong, Japan and before the International Trade Commission, as well as the High Court in London.
At the time, Ilkka Rahnasto, head of patent business at Nokia, said: "Through our sustained investment in research and development, Nokia has created or contributed to many of the fundamental technologies used in today's mobile devices, including Apple products. After several years of negotiations trying to reach agreement to cover Apple's use of these patents, we are now taking action to defend our rights."
Apple separately filed legal papers in the US against Acacia Research and Conversant Intellectual Property Management late last year, according to media reports at the time. Apple accused the companies of acting with Nokia to obtain unfair patent royalties from it.
"We’ve always been willing to pay a fair price to secure the rights of patents covering technology in our products," Apple spokesman Josh Rosenstock said, according to a Reuters report. "Unfortunately, Nokia has refused to licence their patents on a fair basis and is now using the tactics of a patent troll to attempt to extort money from Apple by applying a royalty rate to Apple’s own inventions they had nothing to do with."