Apple to Nokia: 'No, you're the thief!'

Apple files countersuit against Nokia for alleged patent infringement

Smartphone makers Apple and Nokia are getting into the holiday spirit this year by countersuing over a patent dispute.

Apple and Nokia are getting into the holiday spirit this year by suing one another over a patent dispute.

The fun started this past October when Nokia sued Apple for allegedly infringing on 10 of its patents that covered a wide range of mobile data technologies, including speed encoding and decoding, security and encryption. At the time, the Finnish smartphone manufacturer accused Apple of trying to get a "free ride" off of its intellectual property.

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Friday, however, Apple accused Nokia of allegedly infringing on 13 of its patents and pointedly told Nokia that "other companies must compete with us by inventing their own technologies, not just by stealing ours." Apple did not detail what patents Nokia allegedly violated but instead provided a long list of the company's accomplishments, such as "igniting" the "personal computer revolution."

With regard to Nokia's original suit, the company has claimed that some 40 companies have licensed the 10 patents that it has accused Apple of infringing upon. Nokia also claims that it has spent upwards of $60 billion over the past 20 years in R&D to procure its key tech patents.

The Apple-Nokia spat is the second high-profile tech-related lawsuit to generate headlines in the past few weeks. In  November, AT&T filed a lawsuit against Verizon alleging that the carrier's "There's a Map for That" ads falsely assert that AT&T has major gaps in its wireless coverage. In Verizon's response filed with the U.S. District Court for Northern Georgia, the company eschewed standard legalese and instead launched into a bombastic broadside against its rival. AT&T decided to drop the suit earlier this month after its initial efforts failed to get Verizon to take its ads off the air.

Copyright © 2009 IDG Communications, Inc.

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