Apple Told To Pay Qualcomm Over $31 Million In Patent Infringement Case
In the follow up of a heated lawsuit between the noted chipmaker Qualcomm and prominent electronics company Apple, the latest ruling by the San Diego court has found Apple guilty. The company was told to pay a fine of over US$ 31 million to Qualcomm. The amount roughly breaks down to US$ 1.40 per iPhone sold by the company. Notably, it is the exact amount the lawsuit was filed for by the chipmaker. Apple was found by the court to have infringed three patents held by Qualcomm. It was sued back in the year 2017 citing that the company had violated patents related to assisting mobile phones getting a better life.
What Are The Patents?
The lawsuit filed by Qualcomm cited that Apple had violated at least three patents. The damages that it asked for applied to iPhones sold July 2017 onwards, which were kitted with Intel chips. Later in the year 2017, Apple replaced Qualcomm with Intel as its exclusive components supplier. As per reports, in the year 2016, Apple was also using Intel modems in some iPhone variants instead of Qualcomm modems. The devices included the iPhone 7 and 7 Plus. The patents relate to the following functions on mobile devices.
- Allowing phones to connect to the internet instantly after being switched on
- The efficiency of the smartphone’s battery and its relation with graphics processing
- A traffic management function enabling faster data downloads
Interestingly, the past ruling by a German court banned the sales of Apple’s older iPhone models because of a similar patent infringement case. The company then swapped out the Intel’s modem that it had been lately using for the ones manufactured by Qualcomm. This leads the company to be allowed to continue the sales of the said devices. Notably, the biggest lawsuit between the companies will be settled in April 2019, in which Apple has accused Qualcomm of indulging in anti-trust practices and illegally withholding US$ 1 Billion worth of rebates from Apple.