Starting December 6th, HTC will no longer be allowed to import the HTC One mini into the UK. Judge Richard Arnold has ruled that several chips inside the device infringe on Nokia patents. HTC claims that the patents cover “a very small component” and is not significant enough to justify an import ban on the HTC One mini. Fortunately, Judge Richard Arnold was somewhat lenient in his ruling since the flagship HTC One was also found to infringe on the same patents. The judge recognized that an import ban on the HTC One would cause “considerable” damage to HTC’s financial situation. Imports of the HTC One will be allowed to continue until HTC has had the opportunity to appeal.
In an effort to avoid a dip in sales due to the import ban, HTC could increase its shipments of the HTC One mini to the UK before the December 6th deadline. This tactic should give service providers and retails access to enough inventory to continue selling the HTC One mini until the appeal process is complete.
If HTC does not successfully appeal the ruling, HTC may be forced to sit down with Nokia and negotiate a patent licensing agreement which would allow HTC to use Nokia’s patents in the HTC One, One mini and future HTC products.