Qualcomm Alleges Apple Stole And Passed On Its Trade Secrets To Intel For iPhone Chips

Chip making giant Qualcomm has again raised allegations against Apple Inc of decamping with “vast swaths” of confidential information and trade secrets of the company and then the iPhone maker has also shared the same with Intel to allow the Qualcomm’s chip maker to enhance the modems made by Intel which are fitted into Apple’s new iPhone XS, iPhone XS Max, and iPhone XR.

Qualcomm had previously field official complaints and law suits against Apple where the chip maker had alleged that the iPhone maker had earlier breached the master software agreement which existed between the two countries and has appealed to the court to amend the new complaint to the existing lawsuit.

A law suit against Apple was filed by Qualcomm last November where the chip maker alleged that Apple had violated the agreement that it had struck with Qualcomm. The agreement gave power to Qualcomm to ensure protection of the source code and tools it’s sharing with Apple through periodical examination. Qualcomm alleged that it had been prevented by Apple from conducting audits on the use of its code.

Now Qualcomm intends to club the new complaint in that case – now alleging that Apple had passed on propriety information of Qualcomm to rival chip maker Intel.

Qualcomm said these new allegations are being brought by it only now because the issue had been discovered by it recently while examining email conversations between engineers of Apple and Intel, which had Qualcomm had accessed during the current case.

According to reports, source code and other confidential information were repeatedly provided to Intel by Apple engineers so that the former could enhance the performance of its chips. But the reports stopped short of explaining the kind of information and the individuals who shared them.

While there are also reports that Qualcomm wants Apple to settle the issue, Qualcomm’s general counsel Donald Rosenberg was also quoted as saying in a statement that the case would have in any case been filed because of the nature of the allegations.

In a television interview with Bloomberg TV just a day ago, Qualcomm CEO Steve Mollenkopf had talked about settling of the matter with Apple. “The environment is such that a deal could get done.”

Apple referred to a previous statement that it had issued about the allegations of Qualcomm against it.

“Qualcomm’s illegal business practices are harming Apple and the entire industry.  They supply us with a single connectivity component, but for years have been demanding a percentage of the total cost of our products – effectively taxing Apple’s innovation.”

Apple further said that in that statement while the company believed “deeply in the value of intellectual property”, it is not necessary to pay Qualcomm for the inventions and technology breakthroughs that it did not do itself. “We’ve always been willing to pay a fair rate for standard technology used in our products and since they’ve refused to negotiate reasonable terms we’re asking the courts for help”, the statement had said.

(Adapted from bgr.com)

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