US: Qualcomm asks judge to put antitrust ruling on hold

On Tuesday, May 28, Qualcomm asked a federal judge not to enforce her decision that it illegally squeezed out rivals in the smartphone chips market as it plans to file an appeal that could take more than a year to wind through the courts, reported Reuters.

In a filing in federal court in San Jose, California, Qualcomm stated that it believes it can succeed in appealing the May 21 decision by US District Judge Lucy Koh in an antitrust case brought by the US Federal Trade Commission (FTC) in January 2017. The company has not yet filed that appeal; Tuesday’s filing only concerns whether the ruling’s provisions will be put on hold temporarily as it plays out.

Qualcomm argued that Koh’s ruling raised “serious legal questions” because, among other things, she excluded evidence after a March 2018 cutoff date—including the fact that Apple dropped Qualcomm in favor of rival chip supplier Intel—showing that Qualcomm did not have a stranglehold on the market. Qualcomm also claimed that the FTC’s theory in the lawsuit – that Qualcomm’s patent licensing practices amounted to a “tax” on smartphone makers—generating profits that Qualcomm then put to work undercutting its rivals—was unprecedented in antitrust law.

Full Content: Reuters

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