Apple has seemingly reached a compromise in its battle with Qualcomm in Germany. It will resume selling older iPhone models in Apple Stores in Germany, after previously withdrawing them following a court decision. However, it will sell iPhones only with Qualcomm chips inside.
This means not selling iPhone 7 and 8 models which contain Intel chips. Apple began phasing in Intel modem chips back in 2016. Last year, it dropped Qualcomm entirely in favor of Intel.
Apple vs. Qualcomm in
Apple stopped selling iPhone 7 and iPhone 8 models in Germany after a court ruled that Apple was infringing on a Qualcomm patent. Apple initially hoped to circumvent the possible iPhone ban in Germany by making an iOS modification in the country, which it believed stopped it from infringing on at least one of the patents named in the suit.
The patent infringement which seemingly lost Apple the case, however, was one that helped iPhones save battery while sending and receiving wireless signals.
At the time, Apple issued a statement that:
“Qualcomm’s campaign is a desperate attempt to distract from the real issues between our companies. Their tactics, in the courts and in their everyday business, are harming innovation and harming consumers. Qualcomm insists on charging exorbitant fees based on work they didn’t do and they are being investigated by governments all around the world for their behavior. We are of course disappointed by this verdict and we plan to appeal. All iPhone models remain available to customers through carriers and resellers in 4,300 locations across Germany. During the appeal process, iPhone 7 and iPhone 8 models will not be available at Apple’s 15 retail stores in Germany. iPhone XS, iPhone XS Max and iPhone XR will remain available in all our stores.”
At the end of January, Qualcomm filed a motion in court to enforce its injunction on iPhone models. While Apple had stopped selling them in its own stores, Qualcomm noted that they were still available at other retailers. As such, it said that Apple had not properly recalled its devices.
Hopefully this agreement is to the liking of both parties. At the least, it’s good news for Apple Store customers in Germany, who don’t want to splash their cash on the latest models.