Qualcomm wants Apple to pony up $31 million

Qualcomm wants Apple to pay $31 million in damages in the ongoing legal battle — or $1.40 per allegedly infringed iPhone, reports CNET.

The figure was calculated by Patrick Kennedy, an economist and managing director at Torrey Partners, which Qualcomm called to the stand as an expert witness in a just-started trial. The damages are for iPhones sold from July 2017 and contain chips used by Intel, which replaced Qualcomm as a components supplier. In 2016, the company started using Intel modems in some models of the iPhone 7 and 7 Plus. Now, Apple has opted for Intel's modems over Qualcomm's in all its latest phones.

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CNET notes that In cross-examination, Apple counsel Joe Mueller sought to undermine Kennedy's conclusions, which were based on a technical analysis by another Qualcomm witness. Mueller said he was overstating some of the value of the patented technology.

This is all part of an ongoing legal battle. In January 2017 Apple sued Qualcomm, alleging the chip supplier demanded unfair terms for its technology (which the company, of course, denied). Around the same time, the Federal Trade Commission filed a complaint in a federal district court charging the supplier of baseband processors with using anticompetitive tactics to maintain its monopoly in the supply of a key semiconductor device used in cell phones and other consumer products. 

Qualcomm claims it went out of its way to offer alternative licensing (which Apple rejected), and that, in suing Qualcomm, Apple is motivated by reducing the cost to make iPhones.