The European Patent Office (EPO) in Munich today revoked a IPCom's patent EP 1 841 268 (#100A), meaning that an earlier infringement decision may to become unenforceable, allowing Nokia and HTC smartphone sales in Germany to continue.
Earlier this week the Dusseldorf Court in Germany ruled against Nokia. The court found the Finnish mobile phone company had violated patents belonging to German patent firm IPCom.
The EPO's decision means that yesterday's ruling from the Dusseldorf Court is not expected to stop the sales of Nokia products in Germany.
"We are pleased that the European Patent Office has confirmed that this IPCom patent is invalid," said Paul Melin, vice president, Intellectual Property at Nokia. "So far, of 62 IPCom patents that have come to judgment, none has been found valid as granted. IPCom needs to recognize its position and end its unrealistic demands for what remains of this significantly diminished portfolio."
IPCom said it would appeal against the ruling and that its patent 100A, which standardizes a cellphone's first connection to a network, was valid until there is a final decision on the appeal.
HTC said it was pleased with the ruling and said it hoped it would end the long patent fight.
Several top phone makers have signed a licensing deal with IPCom, but HTC and Nokia have challenged IPCom's patents in courts across Europe.