Apple Licensed Scrolling Patent to Nokia and IBM, Not Samsung
Apple’s legal strategy in the ongoing global mobile patent war has resembled a no-holds-barred assault on other companies with no room for licensing agreements. Or has it?
Patent number #7,469,381
covers a “scrollback” function in iOS that displays the background texture when users scroll beyond the edge of a document or webpage. Apple even used the patent in its argument against Samsung in an attempt to get an injunction against their Galaxy devices. However, Apple has licensing agreements with Nokia and IBM for the very same patent. Apple offered Samsung a licensing agreement in November of 2010, but negotiations broke down and the two sides never reached a settlement.
Confirmation of the patent 381’s licensing to Nokia and IBM was shown to The Verge via the redacted statements above. Patent 38 is likely part of the cross licensing agreement between Apple and Nokia after the two companies settled a two-year legal battle this summer. During the coverage of this agreement Apple stated “the majority of innovation that makes the iPhone unique.” The fact Apple sued Nokia, Samsung, HTC, and Samung over patent 381 proves the company believes they have a strong patent according to The Verge. But, Apple licensing out a “strong patent” that the courts indicated they could successfully leverage against Samsung in an infringement case doesn’t seem very Apple like.
Why negotiations fell apart between Apple and Samsung remains unclear. Apple likely requested licensing fees Samsung had no interest in paying. The injunctions awarded in favor of Apple against Samsung, the reversals, and Samsung’s similar successes against Apple recently indicate an agreement between the two companies isn’t coming anytime soon.
Source: The Verge