Custom 5G Apple Modem has Goal of 2022 Release

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Reports say that Apple has moved its timeline for a custom 5G Apple modem to 2022.

It won’t be easy. In fact, bringing a new modem to the finish line in two years is really pushing it, my source said. After all the design work is done, and the fabrication of the chips themselves is underway, an arduous testing and certification process still awaits.

Right now I think 5G is overhyped and even the previous rumor of a 5G iPhone in 2020 didn’t make sense.

An Inside Look at the Qualcomm Monopoly Ruling

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Timothy Lee did a nice deep dive into the 233-page Qualcomm monopoly ruling from Judge Lucy Koh. I’ve heard hot takes of the settlement between Apple and Qualcomm that suggested maybe Apple knew it was going to lose and gave up. But Judge Koh ordered Qualcomm to renegotiate with its customers.

The legal document outlines a nearly 20-year history of overcharging smartphone makers for cellular chips. Qualcomm structured its contracts with smartphone makers in ways that made it almost impossible for other chipmakers to challenge Qualcomm’s dominance. Customers who didn’t go along with Qualcomm’s one-sided terms were threatened with an abrupt and crippling loss of access to modem chips.

In her ruling, Koh ordered Qualcomm to stop threatening customers with chip cutoffs. Qualcomm must now re-negotiate all of its agreements with customers and license its patents to competitors on reasonable terms.

Apple Poached Lead 5G Intel Developer Umashankar Thyagarajan

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Just weeks before Apple and Qualcomm reached a settlement, Apple poached Intel employee Umashankar Thyagarajan.

Mr. Thyagarajan’s departure is understood to have been a setback to Intel’s efforts, forcing the company to reshuffle the 5G project. Shortly afterwards, Intel said it would not be able to release a 5G smartphone chip until 2020, more than a year after Qualcomm.

Very interesting. More and more pieces of the puzzle are being revealed.

Interview With Qualcomm CEO Steve Mollenkopf

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A day after Qualcomm and Apple reached a settlement, CNBC released an interview with Qualcomm CEO Steve Mollenkopf.

Qualcomm CEO Steve Mollenkopf joins CNBC’s “Squawk on the Street” to discuss the Qualcomm-Apple settlement and the company’s future in 5G.

I can’t directly link the video here but I think it’s worth watching.

Qualcomm Owes Apple $1 Billion Rebate Payment

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A federal judge recently ruled that Qualcomm owes Apple almost US$1B in patent royalty rebate payments.

Judge Gonzalo Curiel of the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of California on Thursday ruled that Qualcomm, the world’s biggest supplier of mobile phone chips, was obligated to pay nearly $1 billion in rebate payments to Apple, which for years used Qualcomm’s modem chips to connect iPhones to wireless data networks.

It Doesn't Look Good for Qualcomm in Antitrust Trial

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Qualcomm and the FTC have presented closing arguments in the antitrust trial, and it doesn’t sound good for Qualcomm.

The evidence is overwhelming that Qualcomm engaged in exclusionary conduct. The effects of Qualcomm’s conduct, when considered together, are anticompetitive.

It will be interesting to see if this case will finally close, or if Apple and Qualcomm will keep fighting like Apple and Samsung do.