When we told you about Apple’s suing of Qualcomm over the way its Snapdragon CPUs recently, nobody realized at the time that this was only half the story.
Now we know better, with Qualcomm itself having been busy firing off a similar lawsuit in Apple’s direction on the exact same day, claiming that iPhones from the iPhone 7 to iPhone X infringe violate sixteen patents covering power-saving modes, camera autofocus and other capabilities, the lawsuit goes hand in hand with a US International Trade Commission request to ban imports of the iPhones over five of those patents.
Just as was the case with previous attempts by Qualcomm to get iPhones banned, the new ITC case focusses only on iPhones that use Intel’s wireless chipsets. Apple, for its part, has declined to comment. However, with both companies now having gotten to the point of launching legal volleys at each other simultaneously, it is clear at this point that things are unlikely to settle down any time soon.
Qualcomm rejects claims made by Apple that its royalty demands are on the extreme side and while the banning of iPhones from import and sale is unlikely to happen, the prospect should be one that will have Apple’s bean counters wincing.
The possibility of iPhone 8 or iPhone X shortages caused by a product ban is not something Apple will want to see come to fruition.
If Qualcomm is hoping to bully Apple into bending to its will then it may have chosen the wrong company to push around. Apple has shown repeatedly that it is not one to back down from a legal fight, something that Samsung found out to its peril on more than one occasion over the past few years.
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