Picture: Sam Rutherford (Gizmodo)

Whereas the two-year authorized battle between Apple and Qualcomm is much from over, we’re beginning to inch towards some sort of decision.

On Thursday, Southern District of California Decide Gonzalo Curiel handed down a preliminary ruling in favor of Apple, declaring that Qualcomm is on the hook for $1 billion.

The 2 tech giants’ authorized battle dates again to 2017 when Apple sued Qualcomm claiming that the chip and modem maker had damaged a cooperation settlement when Qualcomm refused to pay Apple patent royalty rebates. In his ruling on Thursday, Decide Curiel agreed with Apple’s declare, ensuing within the $1 billion preliminary judgement.

Nevertheless, it’s considerably uncertain Qualcomm must fork over all that money, as a result of as a part of a countersuit in opposition to Apple, Qualcomm claims that it’s owed patent royalties for iPhones bought that includes Qualcomm know-how.

Right here’s the place this will get complicate: As a result of Foxconn, not Apple, is liable for truly assembling iPhones, the best way the Qualcomm’s patent licensing works is that Qualcomm fees Foxconn for royalties, that are later reimbursed by Apple. Then, due to a separate settlement, Qualcomm would refund Apple a proportion of these licensing charges as patent royalty rebates, however solely so long as Apple consented to not assault Qualcomm in court docket.

However then it will get even messier. As a part of Apple’s authorized spat, Apple instructed its manufacturing contractors (e.g. Foxconn) to withhold patent royalty funds from Qualcomm, a determine that Qualcomm claims has already amounted to someplace round $1 billion. Which means regardless of Apple’s current judgment within the preliminary listening to if Apple is compelled to pay the unique royalties for utilizing Qualcomm chips, that may primarily end in each firms breaking even.

Received it, sure? No? Effectively, that’s okay—you could have loads of time to determine all of it out: None of those rulings are ultimate till the trial begins for actual subsequent month.




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