Qualcomm wins $31M verdict against Apple for patent infringement

Qualcomm headquarters in San Diego. Photo: Coolcaesar/ en.wikipedia

March 16 (UPI) — Apple will pay Qualcomm $31.6 million for violating three patents in the development of one of its popular iPhone models.

On Friday, a jury in San Diego awarded the full amount Qualcomm requested at the start of the trial — $1.41 per iPhone that violated the patents. One patent covered technology that lets the device connect to the Internet when it turns on. Another deals with graphics processing and battery life. A third addresses shifts web traffic from the apps processor to the modem.

The patent infringement covers the iPhone 7, 8 and X models.

For Qualcomm, it shows the San Diego-based company’s contribution to the iPhone’s success and sets up an even bigger trial against Apple over billions of dollars in patent royalties. Qualcomm faces accusations that its products are not competitive and prevented others from entering the modem chip market. The trial concluded in January and parties are awaiting a decision.

Long-term, this could affect the cost of iPhones and how they are manufactured.

In a statement, Apple said the company is “disappointed” in the verdict.

“Qualcomm’s ongoing campaign of patent infringement claims is nothing more than an attempt to distract from the larger issues they face with investigations into their business practices in US federal court, and around the world,” spokesman Josh Rosenstock said in the statement.

The two companies are battling it out in Germany and China, too, where Qualcomm was granted an injunction last year to ban the sale of certain iPhone models for alleged patent violations. In China’s case, Apple released a software update to address the complaint.


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