Qualcomm loses fight against handing data over to EU antitrust officials

Posted:
in General Discussion
Qualcomm on Tuesday lost a court challenge against a European Commission request, which sought more data in its antitrust investigation of chip deals with companies like Apple.

European Union Court of Justice


The company had already been forced to hand over the data if it wanted to avoid a daily fine of 580,000 euros, or about $655,000, Reuters said. Today's ruling was handed down by the European Union's General Court in Luxembourg.

The Commission first made the data demand in January 2017. Qualcomm protested however, saying the E.U. was asking for information beyond the investigation's scope.

"The Court finds that the scope of the investigation as defined in the statement of objections, at the state-of-play meeting of 3 September 2015 and at the hearing on 10 November 2016 has not been extended," the General Court's judges said.

The E.U.'s focus on Qualcomm predates the Apple v. Qualcomm legal war that began in January 2017. In 2015, the chipmaker was accused of using predatory pricing to push phone software maker Icera out of the market. Any malicious tactics ultimately proved fruitless, since Icera was bought out by Nvidia.

January 2018 saw the Commission fine Qualcomm $1.23 billion for a five-year modem exclusivity deal with Apple. That agreement kept Apple from buying iPhone modems from others, hurting competition in the 4G modem industry, Competition Commissioner Margrethe Vestager explained.

Apple eventually began using Intel modems in some models of the iPhone 7, and has since all but excluded Qualcomm, the only exceptions being revised older models to skirt sales bans. It could theoretically be forced to turn back to Qualcomm if it wants 5G modems in 2020 iPhones.

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 6
    chasmchasm Posts: 1,592member
    The hammer falls slowly with the EU, but it falls.
    olswatto_cobra
  • Reply 2 of 6
    MacProMacPro Posts: 18,294member
    Ouch.  The truth 'will out' as they say.
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 3 of 6
    gatorguygatorguy Posts: 20,742member
    Is anyone keeping count of how much the EU has "recovered" from US techs in the past couple of years? I think Google is up to around $9B, Apple at $15B, Qualcomm at close to $1.5B and counting, Amazon's is still be computed, and I think Facebook is coming up too. Microsoft paid their dues a few years earlier but now back under another EU investigation as of a couple days ago. 
  • Reply 4 of 6
    MplsPMplsP Posts: 1,453member
    gatorguy said:
    Is anyone keeping count of how much the EU has "recovered" from US techs in the past couple of years? I think Google is up to around $9B, Apple at $15B, Qualcomm at close to $1.5B and counting, Amazon's is still be computed, and I think Facebook is coming up too. Microsoft paid their dues a few years earlier but now back under another EU investigation as of a couple days ago. 
    enough to pay for a week of vacation for the French?

    I'm more interested in the 'score card' for Qualcomm. In the legal storm of the past couple of years I can't remember reading about many rulings going their way.
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 5 of 6
    gatorguy said:
    Is anyone keeping count of how much the EU has "recovered" from US techs in the past couple of years? I think Google is up to around $9B, Apple at $15B, Qualcomm at close to $1.5B and counting, Amazon's is still be computed, and I think Facebook is coming up too. Microsoft paid their dues a few years earlier but now back under another EU investigation as of a couple days ago. 
    What's the $15B you are referring to from Apple?  Is it the Ireland tax money that's in escrow?  If so, EU hasn't recovered it yet (TBD based on court case(s) outcome).
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 6 of 6
    gatorguygatorguy Posts: 20,742member
    nicholfd said:
    gatorguy said:
    Is anyone keeping count of how much the EU has "recovered" from US techs in the past couple of years? I think Google is up to around $9B, Apple at $15B, Qualcomm at close to $1.5B and counting, Amazon's is still be computed, and I think Facebook is coming up too. Microsoft paid their dues a few years earlier but now back under another EU investigation as of a couple days ago. 
    What's the $15B you are referring to from Apple?  Is it the Ireland tax money that's in escrow?  If so, EU hasn't recovered it yet (TBD based on court case(s) outcome).
    I'm aware of that but Alphabet's are also in dispute (for the most part) and being appealed. So I counted them too even if like Apple the EU may not yet have the money in their coffers. Both are highly likely to swing the EU's way IMHO.  
    edited April 10
Sign In or Register to comment.