Qualcomm Contests EU's $1.23 Billion Antitrust Fine

Following European Commission's antitrust ruling which saw Qualcomm hit with a $1.23 billion fine this January, the technology giant has now officially filed an appeal. According to the filing pictured below, the San Diego-based company alleges that EU investigators incorrectly analyzed and even distorted evidence to reach the case's conclusion. That's based on no fewer than seven pleas entered by Qualcomm on April 6 as part of an ongoing case T-235/18. Among the more prominent points of note is a plea contesting the decision on the basis of "manifest procedural errors." The company goes on to claim that a distortion of evidence occurred which saw its efficiency defense dismissed out of hand and which altered the assessment. Moreover, Qualcomm asserts that the EC failed to provide reasons behind the concluded duration of the "alleged infringement" and that the fines were not proportionate. Lastly, the company is contesting that further errors were made in establishing jurisdiction.

The appeal itself should not come as a surprise, given that the company immediately released a statement of intent just after the ruling. Qualcomm is seeking either a reduction in the amount it is required to pay in fines or a dismissal of the ruling altogether. The appeal could, however, draw out this case substantially. The investigation itself was started back in 2015 and was centered around deals between Apple and Qualcomm. For the investigation in question, the EC concluded that Qualcomm had been preventing competition in the 4G LTE-enabled mobile baseband chip market. The company allegedly used its dominant position for more than a decade to achieve that. Namely, the EC found that Qualcomm had been paying Apple a significant amount of money in order to ensure that the iPhone maker only used its chipsets.

It bears mention that there's no guarantee Qualcomm's appeal will be successful. This is, after all, not the only similar allegation faced by the leading Android chipset manufacturer and tech company over the course of the past couple of years. Further back in 2017, for example, Apple itself sued Qualcomm over unfair business practices. More recently, the company has faced controversy due to its sporadic release of Wear OS-specific chips and was embroiled in an attempted hostile takeover by Broadcom. With that said, the fines involved in this case are hardly likely to hurt the company's bottom line in the long term.

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Daniel Golightly

Senior Staff Writer
Daniel has been writing for AndroidHeadlines since 2016. As a Senior Staff Writer for the site, Daniel specializes in reviewing a diverse range of technology products and covering topics related to Chrome OS and Chromebooks. Daniel holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Software Engineering and has a background in Writing and Graphics Design that drives his passion for Android, Google products, the science behind the technology, and the direction it's heading. Contact him at [email protected]
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