Apple paid Nokia $2 billion to escape fight over old patents

Apple paid Nokia $2 billion to escape fight over old patents

Apple’s latest patent spat with Nokia resulted in a $2 billion up-front payment from the iPhone maker, a colossal sum that seems to indicate Apple was eager to avoid a protracted and ugly dispute that could rival the one it had with Samsung. The amount of the settlement, which was first announced back in May without the disclosure of a financial amount or the new licensing terms, was first spotted in Nokia’s second quarter earnings release by the blog Nokiamob.

“We got a substantial upfront cash payment of €1.7 billion from Apple, strengthening further our cash position. As said earlier, our plans is to provide more details on the intended use of cash in conjunction with our Q3 earnings,” reads the official transcript of Nokia’s quarterly earnings call with investors yesterday. Apple must still pay Nokia money over time, though far less on a recurring basis than this one-time lump sum settlement payment.

The lawsuit, the second high-profile patent dispute between Apple and Nokia in the last decade, began last year when Nokia accused Apple of infringing on dozens of patents it owns, as well as patents owned by Nokia subsidiaries. Given Nokia’s storied history in the phone market, many smartphone makers license the company’s patents for everything from display technology to antenna design. Apple has had a licensing deal with Nokia in place since 2011, after the two settled their last patent dispute. But Apple reportedly did not want to sign a new deal and accused Nokia of seeking unfair terms.

After Nokia filed suit in multiple…

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