Apple has sued major mobile phone chipmaker Qualcomm for $1 billion, accusing it of "charging royalties for technologies they have nothing to do with." It came a few days after the US Federal Trade Commission (FTC) filed a complaint against the Chinese company claiming that its certain business practises are in violation of US competition law.
The Cupertino giant alleged in its lawsuit that Qualcomm withheld nearly $1 billion in payments from Apple as retaliation for its co-operation with South Korean authorities in their investigation on the company.
"For many years Qualcomm has unfairly insisted on charging royalties for technologies they have nothing to do with," said Apple in a statement. "Qualcomm built its business on older, legacy, standards but reinforces its dominance through exclusionary tactics and excessive royalties. Despite being just one of over a dozen companies who contributed to basic cellular standards, Qualcomm insists on charging Apple at least five times more in payments than all the other cellular patent licensors we have agreements with combined."
"To protect this business scheme Qualcomm has taken increasingly radical steps, most recently withholding nearly $1B in payments from Apple as retaliation for responding truthfully to law enforcement agencies investigating them," it added.
Apple went on to say that its "disagreement over what constitutes a fair and reasonable royalty" for years has left it with no other option but to take up the legal course.
However, Qualcomm has termed Apple's allegations as baseless. The company's executive vice president and general counsel Don Rosenberg said in the statement that "Apple has intentionally mischaracterised our agreements and negotiations, as well as the enormity and value of the technology we have invented, contributed and shared with all mobile device makers through our licensing program."
Qualcomm run into trouble earlier this week after the US Federal Trade Commission (FTC) filed a complaint against it in the US District Court in the Northern District of California, accusing it of using its strong hold in mobile phone chips industry to obtain unfair licensing terms.