Apple Challenges Four Qualcomm Patents in Ongoing Legal Battle

Apple today filed petitions with the United States Patent and Trademark Office challenging the validity of four Qualcomm patents amid an increasingly vicious legal battle, reports Bloomberg. Apple is aiming to get the USPTO to cancel the four Qualcomm patents, arguing that they do not cover new ideas.

The patents in question cover camera autofocusing, a device that functions as a phone and a digital assistant, touch-sensitive displays, and circuit memory.

qualcomm iphone 7
Challenging patent validity is one of Apple's typical strategies in its legal battles. According to Bloomberg, Apple has filed a total of 398 such petitions with the United States Patent and Trademark Office.

For the Qualcomm filing, a trio of judges will consider the petition along with responses from Qualcomm, and will issue a preliminary decision on whether Apple's argument has merit. If Apple has a chance of getting the patents declared invalid, the USPTO will conduct a formal review before issuing a final judgement on the matter.

Apple and Qualcomm have been embroiled in a legal battle since the beginning of 2017, with the dispute centered on how much Apple should have to pay Qualcomm in royalties. Apple claims Qualcomm has been charging unfair royalties for "technologies [it] has nothing to do with," while Qualcomm claims its technology "is at the heart of every iPhone." Apple has used Qualcomm LTE chips in its devices for years, but has been moving away from Qualcomm's technology due to the legal fight.

Both Apple and Qualcomm have filed multiple lawsuits against one another, with Qualcomm also seeking import and export bans on some iPhones in the United States and China.

Apple iTunes chief Eddy Cue and Apple CEO Tim Cook will testify on June 27 as part of Qualcomm's initial lawsuit against Apple, which accuses the Cupertino company of lying to regulators to cause trouble for Qualcomm in multiple countries.

Last week, the United States International Trade Commission began investigating whether Apple infringed on three Qualcomm patents related to power management, radio voltage, and graphics processing. A pre-trial report from the ITC's lawyers suggested Apple infringed on the power management patent, but not the other two patents. A ruling on the ITC case, which has the potential to lead to an iPhone import ban, is expected in September.

Top Rated Comments

Doctor Q Avatar
56 months ago
Suppose Apple is working on a new product feature, and they find that a relevant patents exist.

They could (a) pay for a license, (b) challenge the patent's validity, (c) ignore the patent, then pay for a license if the patent holder files for infringement, or (d) ignore the patent, then fight it in court if the patent holder files for infringement.

Which do they tend to do? What does it depend on?

We hear about these cases when they reach court, but I'm curious what happens before that.
Score: 5 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Naraxus Avatar
56 months ago
Apple has a whole lot of nerve
Score: 5 Votes (Like | Disagree)
macbeta Avatar
56 months ago
This is what happens when endless amounts of things that should never have been allowed to be patented, get filed away. They will settle, I wish they wouldn't though, more battles need to actually go to court so sort out some of these weak and frankly stupid patents.
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Doctor Q Avatar
56 months ago
Is this...
If they know about the patent and that they infringe and ignore it, they could have to pay triple damages.
the reason for this?...
Engineers don’t go checking to see if everything they are doing is patented.
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)
shplock Avatar
56 months ago
And here’s the German courts rejecting some of Apples cases too:

http://www.google.co.uk/amp/s/mobile.reuters.com/article/amp/idUSTRE8210JN20120302 ('https://www.google.co.uk/amp/s/mobile.reuters.com/article/amp/idUSTRE8210JN20120302')

Apple was even forced by the courts in the U.K. to print a public apology in the press for the way it behaved over its obsession with Samsung, which Apple took as a joke at first to which the courts did not and told Apple to do it again or find themselves in contempt of court or something to that effect:

http://globalnews.ca/news/304304/uk-judges-tell-apple-to-apologize-to-samsung-again-after-original-apology-falls-short/ ('https://globalnews.ca/news/304304/uk-judges-tell-apple-to-apologize-to-samsung-again-after-original-apology-falls-short/')

That’s how peed off the worlds court got with them, but mainly Apple as it tried to ban Samsung from the planet, for no other reason then blocking the competition.
Firstly you do then admit that you were wrong? You said that it was only the US where Scamsung, sorry I mean Samdung..I mean Samsung were being sued.
They were sued in many many countries. So your point about Apple being turned down in some countries means nothing.
next Apple were not trying to ban the competition because there is NO competition. Apple makes over 90% of worldwide smartphone profits. This with Samsung selling phones in many countries.
Also it was proven, pROVEN that Samsung DID copy the iPhone in many ways.
Samsung's own lawyer got confused and mistook the iPhone for a Samsung phone!
PLus internal Samsung documents were shown that were entitled how best to copy the iPhone.

Does this make Apple innocent in all things? Nope of course not but please do not bring your Apple hatred to a topic where Samsung are clearly wrong and clearly guilty! (regarding your point). Plus in relation to Qualcomm we do not know the outcome of the case yet so we will see.
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)
cmaier Avatar
56 months ago
Is this...

the reason for this?...
Yes. There is seldom any benefit to looking ahead of time to see if there are patents. Even if you think there are none that are relevant, someone sill sue you anyway. And now you have knowledge of the patent. Unless you get a formal legal opinion for each potentially relevant patent. Then you might be able to rely on good faith. But opinions are very expensive and there could be many potentially relevant patents.
[doublepost=1529623248][/doublepost]
Most patent cases are filed with the 5th circuit court.... I wonder if that's where they are trying this case....
I think you mean EDTex (which is part of the fifth circuit). But it’s not true that most cases are filed there. Just most troll cases, and the number has fallen a lot due to recent Supreme Court decisions.

I believe most of the Qualcomm Apple dispute is being tried in California, which is ninth circuit.
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Popular Stories

AirPods Max 2022 Colors

Ten Things AirPods Pro 2 Tell Us About AirPods Max 2

Saturday September 24, 2022 1:00 am PDT by
Upon the release of the second-generation AirPods Pro, the AirPods Max became the oldest current-generation AirPods product still in Apple's lineup. Introducing several new features like Adaptive Transparency and the H2 chip, the second-generation AirPods Pro may provide some of the best indications yet of what to expect from the second-generation AirPods Max. Almost two years later, rumors...
apple watch series 7 aluminum colors yellowbg

Don't Want the Apple Watch Ultra or Series 8? Amazon Has Record Low Prices on Series 7 Models This Week

Friday September 23, 2022 6:56 am PDT by
The Apple Watch Series 8 and Apple Watch Ultra are now available to purchase, but if you aren't interested in these updates you can save a lot of money on Series 7 models right now on Amazon. Note: MacRumors is an affiliate partner with Amazon. When you click a link and make a purchase, we may receive a small payment, which helps us keep the site running. The best deals are on cellular...
iOS 16

Apple Releases iOS 16.0.2 With Bug Fixes for iPhone 14 Pro Camera Vibration, Copy/Paste Issue and More

Thursday September 22, 2022 1:04 pm PDT by
Apple today released iOS 16.0.2, addressing a number of bugs that iPhone 14 owners have been experiencing since the new devices launched. iOS 16.0.2 comes two weeks after the launch of iOS 16, and it follows iOS 16.0.1, an update made available to iPhone 14 owners on launch day. The update is available for all iPhones that are capable of running iOS 16. The iOS 16.0.2 update can be...
14 vs 16 inch mbp m2 pro and max feature 1

New 14-Inch and 16-Inch MacBook Pros Reportedly Launching Later This Year

Friday September 23, 2022 7:08 am PDT by
Apple plans to release new MacBook Pro models in the fourth quarter of 2022, according to supply chain publication DigiTimes. The report does not mention specific models, but it very likely refers to the next-generation 14-inch and 16-inch MacBook Pros given that the 13-inch model was already updated earlier this year. There has been uncertainty surrounding the timing of new 14-inch and...
Tim Cook Apple Event

Gurman: New iPads and Macs May Be Announced Through Press Releases, No October Event

Sunday September 25, 2022 6:50 am PDT by
Apple may decide to release its remaining products for 2022, which include updated iPad Pro, Mac mini, and 14-inch and 16-inch MacBook Pro models, through press releases on its website rather than a digital event, according to Bloomberg's Mark Gurman. In his latest Power On newsletter, Gurman said that Apple is currently "likely to release its remaining 2022 products via press releases,...
Dynamic Island For Android Users Feature

Android App Copying iPhone 14 Pro's Dynamic Island Released on Play Store

Thursday September 22, 2022 7:57 am PDT by
A copycat version of the iPhone 14 Pro's Dynamic Island has arrived on Android's Google Play Store in the form of an app called "dynamicSpot." The app, still in beta, offers customers several different experiences at the top of their smartphones. In its current form, dynamicSpot offers playback control for songs, timers, battery status, and more features coming soon, according to the app's...
AirPods Pro Second Generation 2 Pairing Feature 1

AirPods Pro 2 Engravings Appear in iOS During Pairing and Connecting

Friday September 23, 2022 9:40 am PDT by
Customers who personalize their second-generation AirPods Pro charging case with an engraving will now have that engraving reflected directly on iOS as they pair and connect their AirPods Pro. Apple allows customers to personalize their AirPods Pro charging case with a special engraving that can include select emojis and Memojis. Unlike before, starting with the second-generation AirPods...
Apple Watch 6 New Features Feature 2

Six New Apple Watch Features Coming Later This Year

Friday September 23, 2022 8:12 am PDT by
With new Apple Watch Ultra and Series 8 models now in the hands of customers, Apple has brought a host of smart new features to many people's wrists. But there's more to come. Apple has a handful of additional features in store for Apple Watch Series 8 and Apple Watch Ultra owners before the year's end, and some of them are watchOS 9 functions, which means they will even work on older Apple ...
new airpods pro ear tips

Apple Explains Why Second-Generation AirPods Pro Ear Tips Are Incompatible With Original AirPods Pro

Thursday September 22, 2022 3:12 pm PDT by
Apple today explained why the new silicone ear tips for the second-generation AirPods Pro are not officially compatible with the original AirPods Pro. In an updated support document, Apple said the original AirPods Pro ear tips have "noticeably denser mesh" than the second-generation ear tips. Apple did not provide any additional details, but the mesh density could result in acoustical...