Qualcomm Seeks China iPhone Ban, Files A Patent Case Against iPhone Maker Apple in China
The Qualcomm vs Apple fight is hotting up. Qualcomm has now upped the ante and has filed a patent infringement lawsuit against Apple in China. The more astonishing fact is that Qualcomm wants a complete ban of Apple’s iPhones being sold in China. The patent infringement filed by Qualcomm in the Chinese court has asked to block the manufacturing and sale of iPhones in China, according to a report by Bloomberg this morning.
The Qualcomm vs Apple feud is not new. The fight started when Apple said that Qualcomm had defaulted on its payment for its technology. Apple filed a $1 billion lawsuit with Qualcomm in January and the saga has just continued with that as both companies look to take the fight to courts.
Qualcomm filed a counter infringement case against Apple and the U.S. International Trade Commission in August said it was investigating claims that Apple is violating some of Qualcomm’s patents related to mobile technology in some of its phones.
Apple and Qualcomm are fighting over chipsets. Qualcomm is one of the world’s biggest and most popular chip producers with its Snapdragon chips powering nearly half of the Android smartphones in the market. Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 835 chip is present in Google’s new Pixel phone and OnePlus 5. Apple has its own line of Chipsets and its latest iPhones are powered by a chip called A11 Bionic chipset.
The San Diego-based company aims to inflict pain on Apple in the world’s largest market for smartphones and cut off production in a country where most iPhones are made and nearly half of them are sold. China provides Apple with almost two-thirds its revenue.
Qualcomm has filed the copyright infringement suit in a Beijing intellectual property court claiming patent infringement and seeking injunctive relief, according to Christine Trimble, a company spokeswoman.
Apple had a different outlook about the issue. “The reason that we’re pursuing this is that Qualcomm‘s trying to charge Apple a percentage of the total iPhone value, and they do some really great work around standards-essential patents, but it’s one small part of what an iPhone is,” Apple CEO Tim Cook said on the company’s second-quarter earnings call earlier this year. “It’s not — it has nothing to do with the display or the Touch ID or a gazillion other innovations that Apple has done. And so we don’t think that’s right. And so we’re taking a principled stand on it, and we strongly believe we’re in the right. And I’m sure they believe that they are, and that’s what courts are for. And we’ll let it go with that.”
Since the saga started, Qualcomm’s stock has declined sharply and is down around 19% on the year while Apple stock has seemingly been unaffected. But in case the Chinese patent court upholds Qualcomm’s right and bans manufacture and sale of iPhones in China, it will hit Apple hard.