Apple's legal troubles see no end as Qualcomm mounts new concerns for the iPhone maker in the world's largest smartphone market. After winning a preliminary court order in China, Qualcomm said last week that Apple shouldn't be allowed to sell some older iPhone models in the country due to patent infringement.
Apple's stand on the matter is different. While the Cupertino-based tech titan said it was in compliance with the court's order, it would roll out an iOS update to address the said patent infringements pointed out by Qualcomm's lawsuit. As promised, the iOS 12.1.2 software update was rolled out to users on Monday, but there's a debate on whether it includes the changes necessary to avoid a sales ban in China.
As per Qualcomm, the software update by Apple doesn't change the fact that some of older iPhones infringe upon three patents, including software features for switching between apps and resizing photos before setting them as a wallpaper.
"Despite Apple's efforts to downplay the significance of the order and its claims of various ways it will address the infringement, Apple apparently continues to flout the legal system by violating the injunctions," Don Rosenberg, Qualcomm's general counsel, told Reuters in a statement on Monday.
Does it mean iPhone sales will be banned in China? Apple hasn't publicly commented on the matter yet, but its iPhones continue to remain on sale in the country. According to various media reports, Apple's belief on the matter is that the patent infringement only affected iPhones running older versions of iOS, but the court order doesn't seem to specify such a claim.
"Apple's statements following the issuance of the preliminary injunction have been deliberate attempts to obfuscate and misdirect," Rosenberg said in a statement.
While Qualcomm strongly claims that iPhone sales in China be banned with immediate effect, Apple believes it is in compliance with the court order.
"They are legally obligated to immediately cease sales, offers for sale and importation of the devices identified in the orders and to prove compliance in court," Rosenberg had told Reuters last Friday.
Since our latest iPhones received the latest iOS 12.1.2 update in India, the changelog mentions of bug fixes to eSIM activation and cellular connectivity in Turkey in the new iPhone XS, XS Max and XR. There's no word on whether the software's Chinese change-log is different, but even the company hasn't officially confirmed the rollout of its latest iOS update.
For those who are wondering if the iPhone sales in China be banned or not, Apple's stand on the matter is solid and there is no sign of a ban taking place – at least for now.