Nokia slaps Apple with patent lawsuit

Don't tell anyone, but Nokia might be slightly miffed that Apple posted record earnings while it lost money last quarter. Well, perhaps that's not the reason, but Nokia has nevertheless filed a lawsuit against Apple for alleged patent infringement.

The lawsuit covers ten patents in total, all of which apply strictly to wireless communication technologies. Here's the word straight from Nokia's press release:

The ten patents in suit relate to technologies fundamental to making devices which are compatible with one or more of the GSM, UMTS (3G WCDMA) and wireless LAN standards. The patents cover wireless data, speech coding, security and encryption and are infringed by all Apple iPhone models shipped since the iPhone was introduced in 2007.

While it may not have a particularly strong presence in the U.S., Nokia remains the world's biggest maker of cell phones. The Finnish firm said it had 38% of the global market last quarter, the same percentage as the quarter before and the third quarter of 2008.

Nokia claims to have invested "approximately EUR 40 billion ($60 billion) in research and development and built one of the wireless industry's strongest and broadest [intellectual property rights] portfolios, with over 10,000 patent families." This isn't going to be pretty.

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