A vote to decide the next-generation SIM card standard has been delayed for a minimum of 30 days after technology companies were unable to reach an agreement at an ETSI meeting, reports French financial daily Les Echos.
Nokia is believed to be unwilling to license essential patents if Apple’s royalty-free nano-SIM proposal is adopted, while Sandisk has rejected Nokia’s alternative proposal. According to FOSS Patents, Sandisk also holds patents that may be essential for the new SIM card standard.
Nano-SIM technology is seen as an important step in the miniaturisation of smartphones but Motorola Mobility, Nokia and BlackBerry-maker RIM are opposing Apple’s attempts to make its own technology the industry standard.
Meanwhile,CNET reports that RIM has accused Apple of attempting to affect the ETSI vote, by having Apple employees change their company affiliation when casting proxy votes.
RIM made the accusations in a letter to the ETSI, arguing that three Apple employees had registered as working for Bell Mobility, KT and SK Telecom. RIM said that these individuals should not be able to participate in the vote as proxy voting is not allowed.
A recent Financial Times report said that Apple had applied for six of its European subsidiaries to become part of the ETSI. Subsidiaries with revenue of EUR8 billion or more have up to 45 ETSI votes. If Apple is successful in this move, its number of votes would exceed Nokia’s 92 votes.
Nokia has said as Apple doesn’t currently have any essential patents related to the nano-SIM proposal, its offer of free licensing is meaningless. A spokesperson added that this makes Apple’s proposals seem like “an attempt to devalue the intellectual property of others,” IDG News Service said earlier this week.
Just a bit too much politics in this for my liking. As I understand it, Apples Nano-SIM proposal has quite broad support, but Nokia, RIM, and Motorola are lining up against it. The way I see it, they're trying to prevent Apple from getting skin in the game, when what they should be doing is saying "Hey, Apple made something that it's going to give us all access to for free, awesome."