One of the biggest patent trolls in the world is after another big company, but this time it is a bit different.
The company filed a lawsuit today for a $1 billion against one of the largest smartphone chip maker -Qualcomm citing some shady business practices. The lawsuit says that Qualcomm withheld payments from Apple for licensing some technology in exchange for using wireless modems.
Although Qualcomm is widely known for its Snapdragon mobile processors and SoCs, the company also has a significant market of wireless modems and other smartphone techs.
Before Apple, Federal Trade Commission of US was also after Qualcomm for using similar monopoly tatics. The FTC lawsuit suggested that Qualcomm was forcing companies to use its products by charging more license fee for SoCs for customers who were using competitor’s product. So much that it made competitor’s product more expensive that they are.
Here is Apple’s full statement about why they are suing:
“For many years Qualcomm has unfairly insisted on charging royalties for technologies they have nothing to do with. The more Apple innovates with unique features such as TouchID, advanced displays, and cameras, to name just a few, the more money Qualcomm collects for no reason and the more expensive it becomes for Apple to fund these innovations. Qualcomm built its business on older, legacy, standards but reinforces its dominance through exclusionary tactics and excessive royalties. Despite being just one of over a dozen companies who contributed to basic cellular standards, Qualcomm insists on charging Apple at least five times more in payments than all the other cellular patent licensors we have agreements with combined.
To protect this business scheme Qualcomm has taken increasingly radical steps, most recently withholding nearly $1B in payments from Apple as retaliation for responding truthfully to law enforcement agencies investigating them.
Apple believes deeply in innovation and we have always been willing to pay fair and reasonable rates for patents we use. We are extremely disappointed in the way Qualcomm is conducting its business with us and unfortunately after years of disagreement over what constitutes a fair and reasonable royalty we have no choice left but to turn to the courts.”