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Tech Firms Back Apple In Ongoing Qualcomm Legal Battle

Sam Pudwell joined Silicon UK as a reporter in December 2016. As well as being the resident Cloud aficionado, he covers areas such as cyber security, government IT and sports technology, with the aim of going to as many events as possible.

Blow for Qualcomm as industry group calls on regulators to side with Apple

Several major technology companies including the likes of Microsoft, Amazon and Google have sided with Apple in its long-running legal battle with chip maker Qualcomm.

The two companies have been going head to head for some time, with Apple recently filing a lawsuit against Qualcomm for unfair royalty payments related to the use of Qualcomm technology in iPhones.

Now, the Computer & Communications Industry Association (CCIA), which representing some of the world’s biggest tech firms, has formally given Apple its backing in the ongoing saga.

Qualcomm Stand MWC 2016

Legal dispute

The back-and-forth between the two companies has significantly heated up in 2017, with neither one holding back as they have continued to trade costly lawsuits.

Apple sued Qualcomm for $1billion (£770million) earlier this year for allegedly withholding payments, with Qualcomm responded to in March with a lawsuit of its own claiming Apple had been misleading customers about chip performance.

Most recently the chip-maker filed a lawsuit claiming that Apple had infringed on up to six patent and seeking to ban the sales and marketing of iPhones in the US.

In response, the CCIA has urged the International Trade Commission (ITC) to reject Qualcomm’s claims, as any such ban would harm competition and result in “significant shocks to supply” for phones.

In a statement, CCIA CEO Ed Black said: “If the ITC were to grant this exclusion order, it would help Qualcomm use its monopoly power for further leverage against Apple and allow them to drive up prices on consumer devices. What’s at stake here is certainly the availability of iPhones and other smartphones at better prices.”

Aside from fighting with Apple, Qualcomm has been busy building a fingerprint scanner that is designed to be installed underneath smartphone and tablet displays, rather than requiring a dedicated button.

It has also announced plans to release Windows 10 supporting chips by the end of the year and partnered with EE and Sony to roll out a commercial gigabit LTE network in Cardiff and London. 

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