A German court on Thursday ruled in favour of USA chipmaker Qualcomm in a patent dispute case against Apple, which could lead to a ban on sales of iPhones in Germany. Apple did say it will appeal, but the iPhone 7 and 8 models won't be available in its stores during the process. Qualcomm insists on charging exorbitant fees based on work they didn't do, and governments are investigating them all around the world for their behaviour. Following the ruling, Apple said it would pull iPhone 7 and iPhone 8 models in 15 stores in Germany, but all iPhone models will continue to be available at third-party retailers in the country.
Apple's loss comes days after it suffered defeat on 10 December following a Chinese court's decision to ban iPhone sales due to similar patent disputes.
"Qualcomm's litigation campaign notwithstanding, we hope that these actions by global competition authorities help preserve competition in the premium modem chip market, to the benefit of equipment makers and consumers everywhere". Under this condition, judge Matthias Zigann told the court earlier Thursday, the ruling would not go into immediate effect. Qualcomm has in turn accused Apple of using the chip supplier's vast stable of technology innovations without proper compensation.
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Qualcomm is looking to box Apple in with regards to the ongoing legal battle between the two companies.
Besides, the Cupertino giant is withdrawing its older iPhones from German stores as the company lost two patent cases brought by chipmaker Qualcomm.
When Qualcomm posts the bond to enforce the order, it could seek to extend the ban to Apple's resellers and the newer iPhone models not included thus far, legal experts said. The International Trade Commission has already determined that our envelope tracker chip does not infringe the United States counterpart to the patent at issue in this case.
For now, Qualcomm has yet to issue a statement, and it's unlikely to do so at this stage of the trial. Additionally, Apple is also liable for the monetary damages, and the amount will be determined on the later stage.