CHIPMAKER Intel has buddied-up with Apple in its legal fight against Qualcomm and has slammed the firm for abusing its position in the industry.
Intel, no stranger to an abuse of chip monopoly, claims it's the only remaining competitor for Qualcomm in the mobile market, and by suing Apple, Qualcomm is trying to deliberately squeeze Intel from the baseband modem market.
"Qualcomm did not initiate this investigation to stop the alleged infringement of its patent rights; rather, its complaint is a transparent effort to stave off lawful competition from Qualcomm's only remaining rival," Intel said in a statement.
"This twisted use of the Commission's process is just the latest in a long line of anticompetitive strategies that Qualcomm has used to quash incipient and potential competitors and avoid competition on the merits."
Intel goes on to argue that fulfilling Qualcomm's request "would cause significant harm to the public interest," arguing that a victory for the company would "severely damage competitive conditions in the United States economy by reinforcing Qualcomm's hold on the premium LTE modem merchant market."
The statement, filed with the US International Trade Commission (ITC, comes in response to Qualcomm's complaint alleging patent infringement by certain Apple devices, in which it asked the ITC to ban the import of Intel-powered iPhones.
This ain't Intel's only problem with Qualcomm. The chipmaker also argues that Qualcomm has engaged in other monopolistic and anti-competitive practices. These practices include forcing manufacturers to pay "exorbitant" royalties for every device they sell even if they don't contain Qualcomm technology, and offering Apple lower licensing fees for using its chips exclusively.
"These arrangements foreclosed rivals like Intel from competing for Apple's vital business," Intel said.
Earlier this year, Intel kicked off at Qualcomm over its partnership with Microsoft to bring ARM-based Windows PCs to market this year, threatening that emulation doesn't mean that copyright battles are off the table.
"There have been reports that some companies may try to emulate Intel's proprietary x86 ISA without Intel's authorization," Intel's chief lawyer Stephen Rodgers and Director of Intel Labs Richard A. Uhlig said:
"We do not welcome unlawful infringement of our patents, and we fully expect other companies to continue to respect Intel's intellectual property rights." µ
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