Qualcomm seeks to halt Apple's sales & manufacturing of iPhones in China

Posted:
in iPhone
Mobile chipmaker Qualcomm has filed multiple lawsuits in China, looking to block both sales and manufacturing of iPhones in the country -- something that would cripple Apple worldwide, if successful.




The suits were filed through a Beijing intellectual property court and allege patent infringement, Bloomberg reported on Friday. It wasn't immediately clear what patents are involved.

The two companies are involved in a global legal battle, however, kickstarted by a South Korean antitrust ruling last year. Apple subsequently sued Qualcomm, accusing it of withholding nearly $1 billion in rebates as retaliation for cooperating with Korean officials. Since then Apple has ordered its suppliers to stop paying royalties, and Qualcomm has launched countersuits.

Various government bodies have pursued Qualcomm over its business practices, like Apple accusing it of abusing market dominance to impose unfair terms. Most recently the Taiwanese Fair Trade Commission leveled a $773 million fine, also forcing the company to remove offending terms from earlier client contracts.

Apple can't afford to lose the Chinese suits, as the iPhone is its primary revenue source, and the vast majority of units are assembled in China before being shipped elsewhere. Manufacturing in India is in its earliest stages, limited to the iPhone SE.

It will likely take weeks or months before Chinese legal action makes progress. Apple will probably fight to have the cases dismissed if at all possible.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 25
    philboogiephilboogie Posts: 7,438member
    Good luck with that¡
    anton zuykovSolipscooter63SpamSandwich
  • Reply 2 of 25
    Wow...with a team of such dedicated top level Qualcomm managers and lawyers, the company does not even have to have enemies.
    Why are they keep looking for more trouble? Is it not enough of a problem for them that they started a shit-storm already, so they are looking for the ways to intensify it?
    edited October 2017 deepinsiderviclauyycbshank
  • Reply 3 of 25
    dachardachar Posts: 330member
    Would China really support the stopping of so much manufacturing and consequently loss of jobs and investment?
    SpamSandwichchia
  • Reply 4 of 25
    NY1822NY1822 Posts: 599member
    Wall Street doesn’t seem to care
  • Reply 5 of 25
    NY1822 said:
    Wall Street doesn’t seem to care
    Presumably because a) there is a very low probability that Apple will lose in court, b) if they lose it will be years before it's resolves, and c) if Qualcomm prevailed, Apple would write an enormous check (essentially out of petty cash) to settle rather than actually being shut down.
    philboogiechiaradarthekat
  • Reply 6 of 25
    Lots of insight seems to come out in these types of trials.  Could a trial put additional information about internal Apple contracts and pricing out into the public?  Is Qualcomm trying to force out some additional information that Apple may otherwise prefer to keep secret?
  • Reply 7 of 25
    sflocalsflocal Posts: 4,652member
    If China sides with Qualcomm, it's only because corruption seeks like company.  Qualcomm has been handed defeat several times in court, it's almost a given that China will look at this filing and start laughing in the back room.

    Perhaps WHEN China dismisses the suit, I'd bet Qualcomm would immediately be ready to sit at a table to discuss a settlement, in which I really hope Apple takes it all the way and fine Qualcomm into obscurity.

    Qualcomm really screwed themselves with their ability to run their shop into the ground.  It's time to put QC out to pasture as an example of yet another company that didn't learn from history's mistakes.  Get arrogant thinking you're the best and most likely you'll get shot down quickly.
    pscooter63RacerhomieXbshank
  • Reply 8 of 25
    sflocalsflocal Posts: 4,652member
    dedgecko said:
    Lots of insight seems to come out in these types of trials.  Could a trial put additional information about internal Apple contracts and pricing out into the public?  Is Qualcomm trying to force out some additional information that Apple may otherwise prefer to keep secret?

    I suspect it would be Qualcomm that would end up being under the microscope.  I'd expect many other shops and suppliers will come into the case to spill the beans about how Qualcomm is screwing them too.  

    I don't understand why Qualcomm is opening itself up to a very invasive body-cavity search.
    randominternetperson
  • Reply 9 of 25
    sdw2001sdw2001 Posts: 17,037member
    dachar said:
    Would China really support the stopping of so much manufacturing and consequently loss of jobs and investment?

    Not even a reason to ask that question.  The answer is obvious.  Entire manufacturing cities exist which do nothing but crank out iPhones.   Hundreds of thousands would lose their jobs.   Moreover, it's an extreme and absurd request.  Stopping all manufacturing of a product of a country?  Oh, OK.  I can't imagine any court in the world would go for that one in a case like this.  Last..Apple has all the cards here.  Even if Apple lost and was out of appeals, it is so big and powerful that it could exert pressure on then Chinese government to change the ruling.  Can you imagine that phone call? 

    President Xi:  Hello?  

    Apple:  Hi.  Either fix this or we are taking tens of billions of dollars in business out of your country.  We're taking the 5 million jobs we've created there.  We'll close every store, factory and kiosk and give Donald Trump the biggest present he could ever imagine..moving all our manufacturing from China to the US.   Then he'll go on Twitter, laugh at you, apply trade sanctions, and maybe station 100,000 troops on your border (since he will have already flattened North Korea).   That's right, Mr. President.  You're not just going to war with Apple.  There will literally be military consequences for this decision.  Let us know!

    President Xi:  It's funny...I can't find any record of that ruling, nor can the bodies of the judges be located.  Have a nice day.  
    edited October 2017 tallest skilSpamSandwichcyberzombiejfc1138RonnnieOcornchip
  • Reply 10 of 25
    larryjwlarryjw Posts: 375member
    Qualcomm is losing cases. It’s trying to gain some leverage on their opponents so when they finally sit down at the table, they have some bargaining chips. 

    I wonder who is driving this, the Qualcomm Board, or the CEO? Or perhaps Legal?
  • Reply 11 of 25
    lkrupplkrupp Posts: 7,153member
    China has an “intellectual property court”? Oh my, that doesn’t sound right at all.
    Ofer
  • Reply 12 of 25
    lkrupp said:
    China has an “intellectual property court”? Oh my, that doesn’t sound right at all.
    Well, for disputes between Chinese they do. What they don’t have is a court that will take non-Chinese complaints.
    GG1SpamSandwich
  • Reply 13 of 25
    brucemcbrucemc Posts: 1,528member
    I guess Qualcomm figures this fight is worth all the marbles.  Even threatening this is not something you would do with any company you really expected to do business with again in the future.
  • Reply 14 of 25
    tshapitshapi Posts: 292member
    First of all apple is too valuable for China.

    but if Qualcomm does pull this out of there arse.  

    Foxconn and Wistron and so on are international. 

    https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Foxconn
  • Reply 15 of 25
    Yet another reason to move all manufacturing to the USA by building automated factories. Secrecy is another reason. Robots are good at keeping secrets.
  • Reply 16 of 25
    NY1822 said:
    Wall Street doesn’t seem to care
    Presumably because a) there is a very low probability that Apple will lose in court, b) if they lose it will be years before it's resolves, and c) if Qualcomm prevailed, Apple would write an enormous check (essentially out of petty cash) to settle rather than actually being shut down.
    China will not let Qualcomm win. It is not in the government’s interest. And justice is the least the commy care about. Just imagine couple millions of people out of work and it will create a very unstable situations for China. Controlling its citizens is a very high priority thing to the commy.

    Even Qualcomm win, after years of trail and appeal, Apple will already switch to intel or others. 
  • Reply 17 of 25

    sdw2001 said:
    dachar said:
    Would China really support the stopping of so much manufacturing and consequently loss of jobs and investment?

    Not even a reason to ask that question.  The answer is obvious.  Entire manufacturing cities exist which do nothing but crank out iPhones.   Hundreds of thousands would lose their jobs.   Moreover, it's an extreme and absurd request.  Stopping all manufacturing of a product of a country?  Oh, OK.  I can't imagine any court in the world would go for that one in a case like this.  Last..Apple has all the cards here.  Even if Apple lost and was out of appeals, it is so big and powerful that it could exert pressure on then Chinese government to change the ruling.  Can you imagine that phone call? 

    President Xi:  Hello?  

    Apple:  Hi.  Either fix this or we are taking tens of billions of dollars in business out of your country.  We're taking the 5 million jobs we've created there.  We'll close every store, factory and kiosk and give Donald Trump the biggest present he could ever imagine..moving all our manufacturing from China to the US.   Then he'll go on Twitter, laugh at you, apply trade sanctions, and maybe station 100,000 troops on your border (since he will have already flattened North Korea).   That's right, Mr. President.  You're not just going to war with Apple.  There will literally be military consequences for this decision.  Let us know!

    President Xi:  It's funny...I can't find any record of that ruling, nor can the bodies of the judges be located.  Have a nice day.  
    If you think China need Apple more than Apple need China, you are wrong. 

    if you think China don’t think of that before the rueling, you are even more wrong.

    If you think you can force Xie or China to comply for a company, you are very wrong.

    if you think Donald can last that long, you are super wrong. 
    radarthekat
  • Reply 18 of 25
    viclauyyc said:
    If you think China need Apple more than Apple need China, you are wrong. 
    I realize that 5 million unemployed is more meaningless in China than it is here, but it's still significant.
    If you think you can force Xie or China to comply for a company, you are very wrong.
    The wages of globalization, I'm afraid. They've tied themselves up in this and now they have to do what we say.
    if you think Donald can last that long, you are super wrong. 
    Any day now.™
    edited October 2017 cornchip
  • Reply 19 of 25
    chaickachaicka Posts: 120member
    Wow...Getting very interesting with this 'A vs QC' battle.

    Is Qualcomm betting (or perhaps already confirms) on alternative Android makers to back them up and aiming to disrupt the momentum of Apple to buy time to catch up, knowing Apple's chip advancements and in-house chip designs are going to hit them so hard in the near future that they may not have another chance than now to recover?

    It's more like a platform vs platform battle on the hardware frontier, different from the previous software/UI battle of A vs S.

    Will all those Android makers in China really back Qualcomm up? Or will those Android makers in China somehow join in the battle indirectly to force Qualcomm into lowering the cost of using their chips?
  • Reply 20 of 25
    cornchipcornchip Posts: 1,333member
    something that would cripple Apple worldwide, if successful.
    .... which it won’t...
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