Computer & Internet

Qualcomm Answers Apple’s $1B Lawsuit, Files Counterclaims

Qualcomm on Monday fired again with a response and counterclaim to Apple’s US$1 billion federal patent swimsuit filed earlier this yr.

Qualcomm Answers Apple’s B Lawsuit, Files Counterclaims

Apple breached agreements and inspired regulatory assaults in a scheme to coerce unfair licensing phrases, Qualcomm claimed.

Apple’s swimsuit, filed in U.S. District Courtroom in Southern California, argues that Qualcomm used its dominant place in semiconductors to drive it to pay billions in further royalty funds for applied sciences like Contact ID or Apple Pay, and even added reminiscence, all of which don’t have anything to do with the Qualcomm baseband processor chipsets utilized in cellphones.

The worth of Qualcomm’s expertise has been confirmed over virtually 30 years by means of a whole bunch of licensing offers negotiated with just about each main handset maker within the historical past of the trade, together with Asian corporations that make iPhones and iPads, argued Don Rosenberg, normal counsel at Qualcomm.

Apple Balked

“Over the previous 10 years, Apple has performed a major position in bringing the advantages of cell expertise to its prospects with its standard services,” Rosenberg acknowledged, “however Apple couldn’t have constructed the unbelievable iPhone franchise that has made it essentially the most worthwhile firm on the earth, capturing over 90 p.c of smartphone income, with out relying upon Qualcomm’s elementary mobile applied sciences.”

Qualcomm has spent greater than $40 billion in analysis and growth over 30 years, in response to its courtroom filings.

Apple has launched authorized instances in opposition to Qualcomm in a number of jurisdictions within the UK, China and Japan, Qualcomm famous. Apple beforehand filed monopoly claims in opposition to different suppliers, together with Nokia and Samsung.

The monetary particulars in assist of the businesses’ claims haven’t been made public. Each Apple’s authentic swimsuit and Qualcomm’s reply and counterclaims had been closely redacted previous to launch.

“My understanding is that Qualcomm’s charges had been handed alongside to Apple by means of a third-party firm that Apple does enterprise with,” mentioned telecom analyst .

“Then, I hear, Apple refused to pay these charges,” he advised the E-Commerce Instances, “and that began the entire ball of yarn unraveling.”

Regulatory Evaluate

Days earlier than Apple filed its swimsuit, the U.S. Federal Commerce Fee introduced a lawsuit in opposition to Qualcomm, alleging that it used its dominant place in baseband processors, a type of semiconductor utilized in cellphones, to implement anticompetitive provide and licensing phrases onto cellphone producers.

The phrases, in response to the swimsuit, concerned a no license, no chips coverage that pressured cell phone firms to comply with Qualcomm’s most well-liked license phrases or the corporate wouldn’t ship the processors.

Apple was banned from receiving aggressive processors from 2011 to 2016 in alternate for diminished royalty funds, the FTC alleged.

An FTC spokesperson declined to touch upon the case.

The Korea Honest Commerce Fee late final yr imposed a file $865 million wonderful in opposition to Qualcomm for abusing its dominant place to impose unfair licensing phrases on handset makers.

Qualcomm restricted the flexibility of competing chip makers to work with cellphone producers, the fee dominated.

Elevating the Stakes

There isn’t a query that Qualcomm expertise is central to the evolution of the iPhone, and that Qualcomm has completed greater than every other firm to carry cell phone expertise to the market, mentioned Les Santiago, analysis director for wi-fi and IoT semiconductors at .

Nonetheless, Apple’s declare relies on the argument that it added options to the iPhone that had nothing to do with Qualcomm’s expertise, and it subsequently shouldn’t should pay Qualcomm further royalties, regardless that the funds had been linked to the price of the iPhone, he advised the E-Commerce Instances.

“From that perspective, there’s benefit to Apple’s claims,” Santiago mentioned.

Qualcomm’s counterclaim raises the stakes within the case to a completely new degree, he added.

“I had beforehand thought that Qualcomm would settle its case with Apple, its largest buyer, on the earliest potential [date],” Santiago mentioned. “Now it seems to be just like the battle could drag on for some time.”

Apple and Qualcomm officers didn’t reply to our requests to remark for this story.
Qualcomm Answers Apple's $1B Lawsuit, Files Counterclaims


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