Qualcomm seeks iPhone ban in China with a new lawsuit against Apple

By : |October 16, 2017 0

Qualcomm has filed yet another lawsuit against Apple seeking to block the sale and manufacturing of iPhones within the country, according to Bloomberg.

The lawsuit adds to the long running legal battle between the tech giants over patents. A company spokeswoman told Bloomberg, “Apple employs technologies invented by Qualcomm without paying for them,” noting that the iPhone’s power management and Force Touch features are just “a few examples of the many Qualcomm technologies that Apple uses to improve its devices and increase its profits.”

Apple, on its part, called all such claims “meritless,” and opportunistic, because Qualcomm hadn’t brought up the patents during negotiations and had only issued them recently. “Apple believes deeply in the value of innovation, and we have always been willing to pay fair and reasonable rates for patents we use. In our many years of ongoing negotiations with Qualcomm, these patents have never been discussed and in fact were only granted in the last few months,” an Apple spokesperson said. “Regulators around the world have found Qualcomm guilty of abusing their position for years. This claim is meritless and, like their other courtroom maneuvers, we believe this latest legal effort will fail.”

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Earlier in July, Qualcomm sought a similar iPhone ban in the US filing a complaint with the US International Trade Commission and the US District Court for the Southern District of California requesting a Cease and Desist Order to ban new iPhones from coming into the country. It alleged that Apple is violating six patents that have to do with extending its battery life. Crucially, unlike the other patents at dispute in the companies’ patent spat, it says that none are “essential to a standard,” and that Qualcomm isn’t required by law to license them.

The legal saga between the two companies began in January when Apple filed a $1 billion lawsuit against Qualcomm for over-charging royalties for technologies they have nothing to do with. The filing was prompted by a lawsuit from the Federal Trade Commission, which claimed that Qualcomm was abusing its market position to get more money when selling its smartphone modems. Apple has filed similar lawsuits in China and the UK too.

Qualcomm, on the other hand, has been at the receiving end of hefty fines for similar behavior in the other parts of the world, latest being $774 million fine by Taiwan’s Fair Trade Commission for anti-trust violations.

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