Chinese Court Says Apple Infringed on Qualcomm Patents

Posted Monday, 10 December 2018 ‐ The New York Times

A Chinese court said Apple infringed on two Qualcomm patents and must stop selling seven of its most popular smartphones in the country, Qualcomm said on Monday, the latest turn in a broad legal battle between the two big tech companies.
The court decision bars Apple from selling the iPhone 6S, iPhone 6S Plus, iPhone 7, iPhone 7 Plus, iPhone 8, iPhone 8 Plus and iPhone X in the country, Qualcomm said.
The ruling does not affect sales of Apple’s three newest iPhones, the iPhone XS, iPhone XS Max and iPhone XR. As of late Monday in China, Apple was still selling the iPhone 7 and iPhone 8 on its Chinese website as well. Apple said all models remain available for customers in China, as the ruling only involves models running older software it has now changed.
Qualcomm, which has long sold key communications chips to Apple but has been excluded from its latest models, has filed a series of patent suits against the smartphone giant in multiple countries. Those lawsuits came after Apple filed suit in early 2017 challenging Qualcomm’s practices in licensing its patents.
The ruling in China involved two Qualcomm patents. One enables consumers to adjust and reformat the size and appearance of photographs. The other patent manages applications using a touch screen when viewing, navigating and dismissing applications on their phones, Qualcomm said.
Apple’s stock was down about 1.8 percent in early trading on Monday. Qualcomm’s stock was up about 2.5 percent.
Steve Mollenkopf, Qualcomm’s chief executive, has said he expected victories in its patent cases would help persuade Apple to agree to settle the legal disputes.
“Apple continues to benefit from our intellectual property while refusing to compensate us,” Don Rosenberg, Qualcomm’s executive vice president and general counsel, said in a statement. The injunction is “further confirmation of the strength of Qualcomm’s vast patent portfolio.”
An Apple spokesman, in a statement, said: “Qualcomm’s effort to ban our products is another desperate move by a company whose illegal practices are under investigation by regulators around the world.”
The spokesman said Qualcomm asserted three patents it had never raised before, including one that has already been invalidated.
The company can ask the Chinese court, the Fuzhou Intermediate People’s Court, to review its ruling. But there is no provision to seek a stay in the injunction during that process.
The ruling comes amid signs of a slowdown in Apple smartphone sales that have battered its share price. It also adds to a series of developments that have worsened trade tensions between the United States and China, including the recent arrest of the chief financial officer of Chinese electronics giant Huawei.

Tag: #InventionsAndPatents #Smartphones #SuitsAndLitigation(civil) #Iphone #AppleInc #QualcommInc #China

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