Qualcomm alleges Apple shared trade secrets with arch-rival Intel
Yet another suit has been filed by Qualcomm against Apple, raising the stakes to the ongoing legal melee between the two companies. Qualcomm and Apple have been embroiled in a high-profile legal dispute since January of this year, when Apple asked for US$1 billion in compensation for allegedly being overcharged by Qualcomm to license to company's patents — patents that anyone making a smartphone could easily infringe upon. Qualcomm countered in July by (likely unsuccessfully) attempting to block Apple from selling iPhones in the USA via a complaint to the International Trade Commission (ITC) over violation of non-industry-standard patents. Now, Qualcomm is accusing Apple of sharing trade secrets with Qualcomm's arch rival, Intel.
The System-on-Chip leader filed the new suit against Apple last Wednesday, according to Bloomberg news. Qualcomm alleges that Apple breached their contract with Qualcomm by possibly sharing code with Intel, specifically referencing an incident where Apple requested proprietary information from Qualcomm while keeping an Intel engineer in on the email chain. If you are wondering why these companies are not all on the same side, Qualcomm and Intel have supplied modems for Apple's iPhones in the past (with Qualcomm previously supplying the majority). A source of Bloomberg reports that Apple is attempting to eliminate Qualcomm-supplied components from their devices.
For their part, Intel has already sided with Apple in the dispute, releasing a public statement condemning Qualcomm's "twisted use of the Commission process" and "anti-competitive strategies". Those with a keen memory may note that Intel was previously fined US$1.4 billion for anti-competitive practices against AMD, and is directly threatened by the use of Qualcomm's x86 emulation technology to be used in upcoming ARM-based PCs.