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OnePlus and Oppo phone sales banned in Germany, rest of Europe could follow?

OnePlus and Oppo are not selling phones in Germany as of now thanks to a patent lawsuit.
By
August 8, 2022
OnePlus 8 Pro vs Oppo Find X2 Pro
TL;DR
  • Thanks to a patent lawsuit, Oppo and OnePlus Germany sales have been halted.
  • The lawsuit began with Nokia which claims Oppo/OnePlus phones violate a Nokia-owned 5G patent.
  • The court dispute wasn’t just limited to Germany, so other European countries could see bans soon, too.

Here in the United States, we don’t have access to Oppo phones. We do have access to OnePlus phones, though. Over in Europe, however, most citizens have access to both OnePlus and Oppo phones.

In Germany, unfortunately, that’s no longer the case. An ongoing patent lawsuit from Nokia (the Finnish equipment supplier, not HMD Global, which owns the Nokia smartphone brand) essentially bans Oppo and OnePlus Germany sales (via WinFuture).

Sure enough, both phone brands have ceased sales in Germany today (via 9to5Google). If you head to the German versions of Oppo’s and OnePlus’ websites, you’ll find you’re unable to purchase a new phone.

See also: The best OnePlus phones you can get

This does not affect current Oppo and OnePlus phones in Germany. If you own a phone from these brands, your device will still work as normal. This only applies to new phones sold in Germany.

Oppo and OnePlus Germany sales: What’s happening?

Essentially, Nokia has argued for years that Oppo and OnePlus are allegedly using patented 5G technology in their smartphones. Since the companies didn’t pay for these patents, Nokia has tried to argue in court that sales should be barred until this issue is rectified.

A German court has now fallen on Nokia’s side. This means Oppo and OnePlus will need to pay Nokia for the use of its patents in order to legally sell phones in Germany. Conversely, it could remove the technology from future phones to avoid paying.

However, that doesn’t solve the problem of what to do about phone sales right now. As we mentioned, Oppo and OnePlus Germany sales have been stopped. The companies will need to figure out what to do about that or risk a serious hit to their bottom lines.

From what we can tell, this lawsuit doesn’t just apply to Germany, either. Theoretically, other countries could back Nokia now that Germany has set the precedent. If Oppo and OnePlus are forced to stop sales throughout Europe, they could be in deep trouble.