Nokia Corporation (ADR) (NYSE:NOK) was not happy to see a California federal judge rule in favor of Google Inc (NASDAQ:GOOG) this week. Nokia wanted access to evidence relative to a nativation technology patent dispute in Germany between Google and HTC, yet the court decided the firm was not entitled to this information.
But where is this all coming from?
Nokia vs HTC
Nokia Corporation (ADR) (NYSE:NOK) has been on the warpath against the Taiwan-based HTC, claiming it had suffered patent infringement at the hands of the cell phone and tablet manufacturer. The claims made by the Finnish technology company were to be investigated by the U.S. International Trade Commission last year. In addition to the filing against HTC, Nokia had also indicated that more than 50 of its patents had been infringed in France, Germany, Italy, Netherlands, the U.K. and Japan.
During one of the patent litigations in a German regional court in Dusseldorf, Nokia Corporation (ADR) (NYSE:NOK) intended to subpoena Google Inc (NASDAQ:GOOG), since it considered it had supplied HTC with source code and documents regarding navigation technology. The Finnish company was after something very specific: it wanted to understand how Google servers manage map and routing requests from phones made by the Taiwan-based firm. Of course what it was really after was the technical specifications for Google Maps and Google Navigation. Good thing for Google the court ruled inits favor to protect its trade secrets. Google was subpoenaed because HTC handsets run the Google-backed Android operating system.
How did Google get loose?
Apparently, the court had to dismiss Nokia Corporation (ADR) (NYSE:NOK)’s attempt to get Google involved, since the California-based tech company is not a party to the proceedings. U.S. Magistrate Paul Grewal is not liked by Nokia, especially after he claimed that federal law usually allows discovery orders for foreign litigations, but that he could not compel Google Inc (NASDAQ:GOOG) to give up this information. Either way, according to the ruling, “the unbridled nature of Nokia’s request puts an undue burden on Google and impermissibly intrudes on its proprietary information.” Nice try Nokia, but getting your hands on Google’s tech won’t be that easy.
According to the ruling, Nokia Corporation (ADR) (NYSE:NOK) wanted information regarding all Google Inc (NASDAQ:GOOG) servers, whether they were operated by the U.S. company directly or indirectly. In addition to the mentioned data regarding Google Maps and Google Navigation, Nokia also wanted access to all connections to mobile phone networks viewed by Google. Grewal understood what was going on, indicating that “Because Nokia’s subpoena application is not narrowly tailored, and appears highly intrusive as well as unduly burdensome, this factor weighs strongly against Nokia’s request.”
Better luck next time.