Qualcomm hit with $1.23bn high quality for abusing Apple partnership

Issues simply worsen and worse for Qualcomm. The European Fee has fined the corporate €997 million ($1.23 billion) for “abusing its market dominance” in LTE baseband chipsets. In accordance with the Fee, Qualcomm prevented rivals from competing out there by making hefty funds to Apple on the situation it would not purchase from anyplace else, which is illegitimate beneath EU antitrust guidelines.

The high quality bookends a long-running feud between Qualcomm and Apple. The 2 corporations have been tight again in 2011, after they signed an settlement stipulating that Apple would solely use Qualcomm’s chipsets in its iPhones and iPads — a deal which was prolonged in 2013 to 2016. However in the direction of the top of the settlement interval Apple started scouting out options, prompting experiences that its subsequent iPhone can be constructed with out Qualcomm chips. By this level, although, the 2 have been already embroiled in an intensifying authorized battle that noticed Apple piggybacking off a lawsuit by the Federal Commerce Fee, and later, Qualcomm suing Apple for patent infringement.

The €997,439,000 high quality represents simply four.9% of Qualcomm’s turnover in 2017, so this alone isn’t more likely to bankrupt them. However the firm is amassing antitrust fines and lawsuits at an alarming price. In 2015 it was hit with a $975 million anti-monopoly high quality in China, in 2016, the Korea Honest Commerce Fee slapped it with a $854 million high quality for unfair patent licensing practices, and in October 2017, Taiwan’s Honest Commerce Fee fined the corporate the equal of $774 million for abusing market dominance. As certainly one of, if not the, world’s largest provider of LTE baseband chipsets, Qualcomm can most likely swallow the fines. But when it retains angering market regulators and falling out with companions, it could properly discover itself in a much more precarious monetary place.