Qualcomm files lawsuits in China to ban iPhones

Qualcomm

Qualcomm files suit to block iPhone sales in China (update)

The intellectual property writ is significant given the vast majority of iPhones are manufactured in China, which is also the world's largest smartphone market.

The new lawsuits, the latest gambit in Qualcomm's protracted legal battle with Apple, were reported in an October 13 story by Bloomberg. The lawsuit asks China's courts to ban iPhone sales in that nation as it pursues compensation from Apple for the alleged patent infringement.

Qualcomm is aiming to hit Apple in the biggest pouch possible by filing for a sales and manufacturing injunction on iPhones in China, the company has told Bloomberg. Apple has accused Qualcomm of failing to pay it $1 billion in rebates that it says it is owed.

The suits are based on three non-standard essential patents, covering power management and a touch-screen technology called Force Touch that Apple uses in current iPhones.

Apple and Qualcomm did not immediately respond to requests for comment. The Cupertino company has historically used Qualcomm's modems in its phones, though it's recently switched to Intel chips for that goal.

In its USA case, Qualcomm alleges that it has six patents developed in the past four years that improve battery life in mobile devices and that 'Apple uses these technologies in its devices but is not paying for them'.

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However, Apple has now cut off those payments costing Qualcomm an estimated $2 billion a year in revenue.

Although Apple doesn't use Snapdragon processors in its iPhones, it's still on the hook for numerous patents Qualcomm owns.

This entire issue started back in January when Apple fired off accusations at Qualcomm claiming it was charging unfair licensing fees, among other things.

Qualcomm has not alleged that Intel chips violate its patents but claims that the way Apple implements them in the iPhone does.

Both companies have a lot at stake in this legal battle.

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