Microsoft Faces Opposition In Korea Over Nokia Takeover

Microsoft may have won over authorities in the US and the European Union, but it has had to face some criticism against the deal in some of the other important markets across the globe.

News came out earlier this month that Google and Samsung were pressurizing the regulatory body in China, and now it appears that Redmond’s Nokia takeover is also experiencing some problems in Korea where a local organization is asking the FCC to revise the terms of the deal.

According to this report, the Korea Electronics Association has submitted a petition to the body amid concerns that Microsoft could use patents it buys form the Finnish company against competitors.

Now where have I heard this before?

Anyway, this usage of mobile patents and selling them at a higher price to competition is not unheard of in the world of technology. As Hwang Eun-jeong, Korea Electronics Association’s lawyer put it:

“As a mobile phone maker, Nokia rarely exercised its patent rights because of its cross-licensing with Samsung Electronics, Apple and the like, but now it can launch patent lawsuits or demand an increase in royalties without any limitation.

At the same time, Microsoft can expand its mobile phone business while keeping Samsung and Apple at bay by utilizing Nokia as a sort of cannon fodder.”

Ifs and buts, people, but the fact remains that Microsoft is not actually purchasing all Nokia patents. It is only acquiring its devices and services business, and will license the patents for a limited time.

Microsoft is yet to issue any statement on this, but if this keeps up, then it just might.

Please Leave Your Comments Below...

  • Wayne Scott

    To me, it seems like Nokia and Microsoft used each other for advantages and everyone else is bitter. Are there any legitimate legal issues about this?

    • Fahad Ali

      Well there could be in the future, if people decide to play it dirty. Well, Nokia, mostly, or what will be left of it after the buyout is complete.

      • Sally Black

        I am with Wayne here. Could you explain to me the potential legal implications? I’m not too good with patent law.

        • Fahad Ali

          This particular case is all huff and puff, because really, Microsoft is only acquiring the devices and services unit of Nokia, and not the patents. From what we’ve heard, Microsoft will license the patents that Nokia owns, going forward.

          Legal implications could come from Nokia, if the company (or what’s left of it after the final transaction) decides to charge higher prices for the telecom patents that it owns.

          No problems if Nokia plays it safe, though. And it’s very rarely that regulatory authorities stop a deal like this from going through, unless there are some real threats to the competition.

          • Bill Franklin

            I agree with your reasoning here. I think it’s spot on. Not a lot of substance to this case yet, other than scared competitors. I don’t see this being a problem going forward.

          • Fahad Ali

            Yeah, and to think it’s Korea, of all places. Oh, Samsung!

  • John

    Samsung bribed them to say that.

    • Ted Smith

      Haha. I hate to be cynical, but I agree with you. Seems like there’s very little evidence at this point. On the other hand though, where there’s smoke, there’s fire. I guess we’ll have to wait and see how this plays out.

  • Ray C

    Well, if you don’t have 2 or 3 Windows Phones outs on the market, you just need to approve it and shut up

  • Jake Phillips

    What kind of an statement should we expect from Microsoft eventually? Claim of innocence or attack at the complaints?

    • Fahad Ali

      For the time being, even with these new developments, Microsoft is expected to get approval from the remaining bodies. But if things escalate, one would imagine a claim of innocence is in order.

      Besides Microsoft has been quite reasonable with its patents that are used by Android vendors. The company has a good reputation.

  • David Farris

    Google and Samsung your concern is duly noted. Now piss off.

    • Ray C

      Yep

  • Macpaul Emeka Ekwueme

    Koreans and their extreme nationalism. How big is the market there anyway? Just the ten people there. MS should just shun them. It’s all about their Almighty Samsung.