Feeds

Qualcomm import ban lifted

But not for er, Qualcomm

Combat fraud and increase customer satisfaction

The US Court of Appeals has ruled that the International Trade Commission can't actually ban third parties from importing kit containing Qualcomm chips, even if they breach a Broadcom patent.

In June last year the ITC issued a ban which prevented third parties from importing devices containing specific Qualcomm chips, on the basis that those chips infringe a Broadcom patent. But the companies importing the chips were not named in the action brought by Broadcom - and therefore, the Court of Appeals has decided, they can't be prevented from shipping them into the US.

However, Qualcomm's attempts to manoeuvre its chips from under the patent's cover failed, so it won't be able to ship any of its own chips into the country.

Qualcomm reckons it's redesigned its products to work around the Broadcom patent anyway, so the lifting of the ban won't have a big impact on day-to-day operations - it only represents another round in the ongoing struggle between the two companies.

The ruling (pdf) also gives a fascinating look at the English language, and how much money can depend on a single word or phrase. The Court of Appeal decided that the ITC had overstepped the mark on the basis of a clause that states under what conditions a third party can be banned from importing goods, and another that claims no clause shall be deemed superfluous - thus a ruling against Qualcomm can't be applied to third parties, as that would render the specific clause redundant. (Still with us?)

Given that the whole patent cases depends on the definition of the word "different", in the context "[A] second wireless communication different from the first", it's hardly surprising that the rulings are becoming increasingly semantic-dependent.

Qualcomm's assertion that the GSM specification is a "single document", for the purposes of prior-art, was undermined by each specification making up the standard having its own page numbering and cover picture. The ruling also found that while Qualcomm might have been guilty of encouraging others to break the patent, by providing documentation and technical support, this did not constitute "evidence of culpable conduct, directed to encouraging another’s infringement".

Basically this is one more round in a battle between the two companies, of more interest to English students than anyone using a mobile phone, but each battle surely brings the end of the war a little closer. ®

Top three mobile application threats

More from The Register

next story
Virgin Media so, so SORRY for turning spam fire-hose on its punters
Hundreds of emails flood inboxes thanks to gaffe
A black box for your SUITCASE: Now your lost luggage can phone home – quite literally
Breakfast in London, lunch in NYC, and your clothes in Peru
AT&T dangles gigabit broadband plans over 100 US cities
So soon after a mulled Google Fiber expansion, fancy that
AT&T threatens to pull out of FCC wireless auctions over purchase limits
Company wants ability to buy more spectrum space in auction
EE & Vodafone will let you BONK on the TUBE – with Boris' blessing
Transport for London: You can pay, but don't touch
Turnbull gave NBN Co NO RULES to plan blackspot upgrades
NBN Co faces huge future Telstra bills and reduces fibre footprint
NBN Co plans fibre-to-the-basement blitz to beat cherry-pickers
Heading off at the pass operation given same priority as blackspot fixing
NBN Co in 'broadband kit we tested worked' STUNNER
Announcement of VDSL trial is not proof of concept for fibre-to-the-node
prev story

Whitepapers

Mobile application security study
Download this report to see the alarming realities regarding the sheer number of applications vulnerable to attack, as well as the most common and easily addressable vulnerability errors.
3 Big data security analytics techniques
Applying these Big Data security analytics techniques can help you make your business safer by detecting attacks early, before significant damage is done.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Securing web applications made simple and scalable
In this whitepaper learn how automated security testing can provide a simple and scalable way to protect your web applications.
Combat fraud and increase customer satisfaction
Based on their experience using HP ArcSight Enterprise Security Manager for IT security operations, Finansbank moved to HP ArcSight ESM for fraud management.