The popular theory, or one of them anyway, is that Nokia and RIM are fighting for that elusive "third ecosystem" bragging rights behind the all-conquering Samsung and Apple's respective Android and iOS empires.
Considering the pair's current fortunes, even small victories over the other are a big deal, and so Nokia will be feeling fairly chuffed at having scored a patent dispute win in the courts that could see its North American rival's phones banned unless RIM pays royalties on each device sold.
The victory comes in the Swedish courts after an arbitration hearing over a WLAN-related licensing agreement dating back to 2003.
Over to Nokia's press release:
"Nokia and RIM agreed a cross-license for standards essential cellular patents in 2003, which was amended in 2008. In 2011, RIM sought arbitration, arguing that the license extended beyond cellular essentials.
"In November, the arbitration tribunal ruled against RIM. It found that RIM was in breach of contract and is not entitled to manufacture or sell WLAN products without first agreeing royalties with Nokia."
Nokia says it will now push forward with further court action in the US, UK and Canada "with the aim of ending RIM's breach of contract". In other words, it wants RIM to pay up for the use of its patents or it will push to have the BlackBerry maker's products banned from sale.