After an intense jury trial, Qualcomm secured what it believes to be a pivotal victory in the ongoing legal battles between it and Apple.
The jury awarded Qualcomm the damages figure they asked for of $1.41 per iPhone sold with infringing technology, which amounted to nearly $32 million in total. And for the tech giants, the dollar amount is less significant than what comes next.
Three Little Patents
The jury in the case found that Apple did in fact violate three of Qualcomm's patents related to mobile tech in several of the iPhone models. Curiously though, Apple alleges that it was never contacted about their alleged infringement until it started doing business with Qualcomm's competitor, Intel.
Apple believes that Qualcomm instituted the action in retaliation, and while the verdict is a mere drop in the digital bucket for the tech giant, it wouldn't be uncharacteristic for Apple to appeal.
Next Trial on the Horizon
Notably, the same two tech giants are poised to square off again next month, but this time Qualcomm is on the defending end of allegations that the way the company operates effectively monopolizes the modem chipset market. In responding to the $31 million verdict, Apple's spokesperson brushed it off as an attempt to distract the world from the bigger trouble Qualcomm is facing.
In that case, Apple and its contract manufacturers assert damages in the billions for unpaid royalty rebates that were supposed to be paid to them by Qualcomm. But that case hasn't gone so well for Apple, but is slated for trial in a matter of weeks now.