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Apple Ordered To Stop Selling Some iPhones In Germany

The injunction follows a finding by a German court that Apple is infringing on Qualcomm's intellectual property.

Posted on December 20, 2018, at 1:59 p.m. ET

Apple is infringing on Qualcomm’s intellectual property and must stop selling certain iPhones in Germany, a court in Munich found Thursday.

It’s the latest battle in a long-running war between the San Diego chipmaker, which accuses Apple of using technology derived from its patents without paying, and the Cupertino behemoth, which accuses Qualcomm of overcharging for its innovations and seeking to create a monopoly.

The ruling means Apple must stop selling iPhone 7 and 8 devices in its 15 stores in Germany. But to enforce the order, Qualcomm must pay two security deposits of 668.4 million euros (about $761 million) — one for Apple and another for its Apple Distribution International subsidiary.

Apple plans to appeal the ruling.

“Qualcomm’s campaign is a desperate attempt to distract from the real issues between our companies,” Apple said in a statement. “Their tactics, in the courts and in their everyday business, are harming innovation and harming consumers.”

The legal conflict between the two tech giants dates to January 2017, when Apple sued Qualcomm for extracting what it called “unreasonable” costs in royalties for iPhones using technology based on Qualcomm patents. The arena has shifted from California to China and now to Germany, as Apple has supported efforts by Washington and Seoul to investigate Qualcomm on antitrust grounds.

At stake is the amount of money Apple must pay Qualcomm for every iPhone it sells.

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