China bans multiple iPhone models from sale

14 December, 2018, 09:27 | Author: Kevin Carter
  • Qualcomm Ruling Halts iPhone Sales in China

A Chinese court has banned the sale and import of most iPhone models after granting Qualcomm an injunction against Apple, a stunning decision that comes amid the trade war between the U.S. and China, the media reported on Tuesday.

Qualcomm, the biggest supplier of chips for mobile phones, filed its case in China in late 2017, arguing that Apple infringed patents on features related to resizing photographs and managing apps on a touch screen. It is not believed to apply to the latest version of iOS, the iPhone's operating system, so Apple may continue to sell older phones provided they have been updated to the latest version of its software.

Apple's statement added that "all iPhone models remain available for our customers in China".

Qualcomm has other patent cases running against Apple in China and other areas of the world.

Patents which Apple has stopped paying royalties for, as the company considered that Qualcomm is over-charging for licensing.

The proposed injunction sent Apple shares down more than 2 per cent in early trading in NY. According to analysts, the affected devices make up about 15 percent of total iPhone sales in China now, so the effect, in case of a ban, is fairly contained for Apple.

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The court order barring import and sales covers the iPhone X, 8, 7 and 6 models.

On the surface, the battle is between two major name tech companies, Apple and Qualcomm, who have been engaged in high-stakes legal battles over intellectual property for years.

Apple, though, has pushed back on the characterization.

Days after President Donald Trump and President Xi Jinping agreed on a 90-day trade truce, Canada announced that it is holding for extradition to the United States the chief financial officer of Huawei, China's biggest telecommunications company. "Apple is made in China, in fact".

As of now, the banned models can still be purchased normally from Apple's official website, Jingdong and other channels. A proxy war has ensued in which various regulators suddenly got hold of a bunch of dirt on Qualcomm and Apple has found itself accused of playing fast and loose with intellectual property. To retaliate, it dropped Qualcomm's LTE hardware from its recent iPhones, switching instead to Intel modems.

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