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Broadcom batters Qualcomm in IPR court

Qualcomm forced to lower high patent royalties

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We can understand that Qualcomm wouldn't want to do this on technologies it dominates such as CDMA and some core error correction systems, but where it has contributed a tiny amount to a patent process it should just go with the flow.

If this turns out to be the type of issue that the rest of the Qualcomm Broadcom dispute is based on, then it will all go in Broadcom's favour. The federal jury sat at a trial in San Diego and found that Broadcom had not infringed the two patents. The verdict was unanimous and was reached after six hours of deliberation. Senior officials at both companies were involved with Broadcom's co-founder Dr Henry Samueli and Qualcomm co-founder Dr Irwin Jacobs both taking the witness stand, along with many other expert witnesses.

The jury found that Qualcomm had knowingly violated a duty to disclose its patents to the standards organisation involved in the run up to its adoption as a standard and that Qualcomm did not operate in good faith in its dealings with the US Patent and Trademark Office.

David Dull, Broadcom's Senior Vice President and General Counsel said: "The trial cast a bright light on Qualcomm's penchant for abusing the rules and procedures of industry standards-making bodies."

This was the second Broadcom victory in court over Qualcomm. It won a case involving the US International Trade Commission last year that showed that Qualcomm's cellular baseband chips infringe on Broadcom patents.

But there remains a long way to go on the Broadcom Qualcomm battles, with Qualcomm cellular baseband patents at the heart of another suit and Broadcom patents relating to Bluetooth, and cellular technologies at the heart of another, both to be heard later this year.

Altogether, Broadcom says it has infringement claims from 14 different Broadcom patents awaiting trial against Qualcomm along with two anti-trust actions, one in the US and another in Europe.

A statement from Qualcomm recited in the US press, claimed a small victory in that its video compression patent remains valid, according to the judge, despite all the other controversy.

Copyright © 2007, Faultline

Faultline is published by Rethink Research, a London-based publishing and consulting firm. This weekly newsletter is an assessment of the impact of the week's events in the world of digital media. Faultline is where media meets technology. Subscription details here.

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