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Nokia has earned more from iPhone than selling Lumia Windows Phone 7

After Microsoft was found to be making more from licensing its patents to Android handset makers than from selling its own Windows Phone 7, it's now clear Nokia has earned more from licensing patents to Apple than it has selling its own Lumia Windows Phone 7 devices.

Nokia actually lost money selling mobile devices over the last quarter, resulting in a $1.7 billion overall loss despite the launch of a variety of new Lumia devices.

After a troubling first quarter one year ago resulted in sales of 108.5 million mobile devices, the company only managed to sell 82.7 million units over the past quarter, a decline of 24 percent.

However, Nokia was able to rake in around $600 million from Apple to settle a patent licensing dispute involving a variety of standards essential patents, according to a source familiar with the terms of the deal.

If it can't reverse its fortunes selling Windows Phone 7-based Lumia phones, Nokia is likely to convert itself into a non-practicing entity going after other smartphone makers, or it may choose to sell its broad patent portfolio to another firm, potentially including Microsoft itself.

Last year, Google agreed to pay an astounding $12.5 billion to acquire Motorola Mobility, which like Nokia has been losing money making smartphones. Also like Nokia and Microsoft, Google has been earning significantly more revenue from Apple's iOS than its own Android platform.