U.S. judge recommends iPhone import ban due to infringed Qualcomm patent

Following a discovering that sure iPhones infringed a Qualcomm patent, a U.S. Worldwide Commerce Fee decide beneficial right this moment that the USA ban Apple from importing the gadgets. Whereas the advice is topic to evaluate by the total ITC, it raises the prospect that a few of Apple’s flagship merchandise may quickly be barred from sale of their house market.

Right this moment’s suggestion was famous on the digital docket of ITC Choose MaryJoan McNamara (by way of Bloomberg), who discovered that iPhones made with Intel chips had infringed one Qualcomm patent — particularly for a power-saving function — however not two others associated to downloading information. Apple beforehand relied closely on Qualcomm modems for its iPhones, however started to maneuver its modem enterprise over to Intel after accusing Qualcomm of unfair licensing practices.

A handful of pretty current iPhone fashions might be topic to the ban. Along with carrier-specific variations of prior-generation iPhones, Apple moved all of its 2018 iPhone fashions to Intel modems, ending Qualcomm’s provider function other than continued gross sales of legacy merchandise.

It’s price making an allowance for that the decide’s suggestion shouldn’t be ultimate, and won’t end in a ban until the total ITC agrees. Qualcomm has argued that banning infringing iPhones will ship a message to Apple relating to the worth of its mental property, whereas Apple claims that the chipmaker is abusing its patent holdings in a monopolistic method.

Apple and Qualcomm are at present preventing a number of patent and patent licensing battles all over the world. Qualcomm has received partial iPhone bans in each Germany and China primarily based on patent infringements, although Apple has sought to mitigate the issues with software program patches and {hardware} provide adjustments. A separate U.S. trial discovered earlier this month that Apple had infringed three Qualcomm patents, awarding Qualcomm $1.41 for each infringing iPhone bought.

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