US: Apple and Qualcomm each get a win in federal patent rulings

On Tuesday a US administrative-law judge believes that Apple Inc. infringed a Qualcomm Inc. patent and that certain iPhone models should be banned from entering the US, but a final ruling from the International Trade Commission in a separate case went Apple’s way, reported the Wall Street Journal.

Apple gained a win with a ruling by members of the US International Trade Commission that the iPhone maker didn’t violate a patent held by its former chip supplier. That ruling effectively overturned an ITC administrative judge’s finding in September that Apple had violated a Qualcomm patent related to power efficiency in mobile phones.

Hours earlier a US trade judge recommended Qualcomm be granted a request for an import ban on some iPhones sold by Apple. An administrative law judge of the US International Trade Commission said the basis for the ban was a finding that Apple infringed a Qualcomm patent relating to smartphone technology.

“We appreciate Judge McNamara’s recognition of Apple’s infringement of our hardware patent and that she will be recommending an import ban and cease and desist order,” Qualcomm General Counsel Don Rosenberg said in a statement.

“Qualcomm is using these cases to distract from having to answer for the real issues, their monopolistic business practices,” Apple said in a statement.

In both cases Qualcomm sought to have imports of Apple Inc iPhone 7, 8 and X models containing chips made by Intel Corp banned. Because iPhones are made overseas, banning imports would choke Apple’s sales of the phones in the United States.

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