Qualcomm loses patent arbitration case

The chipmaker must refund BlackBerry over $800 million

fine and gavel

Qualcomm has been ordered to refund Blackberry $815 million, after losing a patent arbitration case against the company.

Back in 2016, BlackBerry and Qualcomm agreed to arbitrate a dispute on whether Qualcomm's royalty cap program applied to non-refundable royalty prepayments made by BlackBerry between 2010 and 2015. Qualcomm claimed that the cap was voluntary.

"While Qualcomm does not agree with the decision, it is binding and not appealable," the chipmaker said in a statement.

The award will later increase to include interest and lawyer fees. A final total is expected on 30 May.

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"BlackBerry and Qualcomm have a longstanding relationship and continue to be valued technology partners," said BlackBerry executive chairman and CEO, John Chen. "We are pleased the arbitration panel rule in our favour and look forward to collaborating with Qualcomm in security for ASICs and solutions for the automotive industry."

The loss comes at a very poor time for Qualcomm, which is currently involved in a patent lawsuit against Apple as well.

As reported by Ars Technica Apple filed the suit against Qualcomm back in January, claiming it charges companies billions in royalties for "technologies they have nothing to do with" and abuses its monopoly power of the mobile wireless chip market.

Qualcomm issued a countersuit earlier this week, alleging that Apple is forcing it to accept less than what's fair for access to its patents. The company denied a total of 389 allegations made by Apple.

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