Jury rules Apple owes Qualcomm $31M for patent infringement

Apple Loses Patent Case to Qualcomm: Here’s What It Means

Qualcomm and Apple have been duking it out in courts around the globe with respect to patents and licensing agreements.

For its part, Apple previously claimed that this lawsuit was brought forward by Qualcomm as a retaliatory move based on its decision to select Intel as secondary LTE modem supplier starting with the iPhone 7.

Qualcomm previous year sued Apple alleging it had violated patents related to helping mobile phones get better battery life.

The $31 million penalty is small change for Apple, the second most valuable USA company after Microsoft Corp, with a market value of $866 billion and annual revenue totaling hundreds of billions of dollars.

The damages were tabulated from July 6, 2017 through the end of the trial, according to a Qualcomm statement.

On Thursday, judge Gonzalo Curiel of the U.S. District Court for Southern California ruled that Qualcomm owes Apple almost $1 billion in rebate payments. Apple has sought to dismantle what it calls Qualcomm's illegal business model of both licensing patents and selling chips to phone makers. Qualcomm executive vice president and general counsel Don Rosenberg said in a statement to Reuters: "Apple has already offset the payment at issue under the agreement against royalties that were owed to Qualcomm".

5G at the Qualcomm booth at CES International in Las Vegas. A jury announced the verdict Friday March 15 that Apple should pay $31 million in damages for infringing on patents for technology owned
Apple ordered to pay $31 million in royalties to Qualcomm for infringement of three patents

Judge Gonzalo Curiel of the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of California on Thursday ruled that Qualcomm, the world's biggest supplier of mobile phone chips, was obligated to pay almost $1 billion in rebate payments to Apple, which for years used Qualcomm's modem chips to connect iPhones to wireless data networks.

It's hard to believe the arrangement between Qualcomm and Apple was established in the first place. For example, next month a trial will start up in San Diego that will deal with billions of dollars in royalties.

While the agreement worked for several years, Qualcomm made a decision to stop paying Apple when it found that the company was making "false and misleading" statements to the Korean Fair Trade Commission, which was investigating Qualcomm at the time over antitrust violations.

Apple and Qualcomm have other court cases to come, including a trial that is scheduled for April.

The jury agreed with Qualcomm's contention that it should be paid $1.41 per iPhone relying on three of its patents. But it does not say much about the value of Qualcomm's entire patent portfolio and was unlikely to spark settlements discussions, he said.

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