It is common for many modern cars to be connected to the Internet in the same way as smartphones. They get traffic or weather data and can even download updates to their software. However, Daimler has a different view on how payments for these technologies should work than Finland’s Nokia supplier.
According to the Financial Times website, the German Daimler, unlike some other car manufacturers, refuses to pay licenses for the use of technologies for communication on 2G, 3G and 4G networks. He argues that licenses should be paid by those suppliers who manufacture the components in question for Daimler, such as Continental. He joined the dispute.
Both German companies claim that Nokia has refused to grant Continental the desired license, which the Finnish company denies. However, the Mannheim court, which ruled in Tuesday’s case, said Daimler and Continental had no will or preparation to enter into a licensing agreement with Nokia on fair terms.
The Mannheim court therefore ruled that Daimler had infringed Nokia’s patent protection on telecommunications technologies used in cars to connect to the Internet. In an extreme case, Nokia may require the cessation of sales of cars using the technologies in question in Germany, or at least their disconnection from the Internet.
According to Daimler, this would affect about half of the cars sold in Germany, but the company does not expect Nokia to ask for such a thing. In order to do so, the court would require her to lodge a security of EUR 7 billion (CZK 182.8 billion) in advance to settle Daimler’s claims in the event that the sales ban proves unjustified.
Daimler said in a statement that he did not understand the court’s decision and would appeal against it. Continental also criticized the decision: “This is exactly the licensing agreement that we have been demanding from Nokia for a long time, and which we are also demanding in court in the USA,” said a statement quoted by Reuters.
This dispute is not the first Nokia has with Daimler in Germany. There are a total of ten; the first lawsuit was dismissed earlier this year by the same court, which has now ruled in favor of Nokia.
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