A US International Trade Commission judge has ruled that Qualcomm Inc infringed a Broadcom Corp patent. But the companies’ legal battles are far from over.
Broadcom said the ITC is expected to issue a permanent exclusion order barring importation into the US of infringing Qualcomm chips, as well as a cease and desist order preventing further sales of infringing products that have been bought into the US.
But the decision by the ITC judge must first be reviewed by the full commission and may be appealed in federal court. The commission is scheduled to make its decision by February 9, 2007.
We believe Qualcomm infringes at least 15 additional Broadcom patents across its entire product line, and we expect to take those cases to trial over the next 12 months, said David Dull, Broadcom VP and general counsel, in a statement. Today’s ruling validates our decision to challenge Qualcomm’s illegal conduct, and will invigorate us to aggressively enforce our rights going forward.
The judge ruled that Qualcomm infringed on three of the claims in a Broadcom patent relating to radio chips used to transmit wireless calls. However, Qualcomm had not infringed on two other Broadcom patents as alleged by Broadcom.
Qualcomm is gratified with the [ITC judge’s] determination that our company has not infringed two of the three Broadcom patents, said Qualcomm chief executive Paul Jacobs, in a statement.
Qualcomm also has filed suits against Broadcom, also for alleged patent and trade secret infringement. A California court will hold a hearing on October 27 for one of those suits and the first of those cases is scheduled for a January 2007 trial, Qualcomm said, in a statement.
Last week, the chairs of both Broadcom and Qualcom met with a mediator in a California court, but did not reach a settlement agreement. The judge in the case ordered them not to comment on the closed-door talks.
Also, Broadcom is part of a group of six vendors that last year filed a complaint against Qualcomm to the European Commission for its allegedly anticompetitive practices.