The Federal Trade Comission’s main purposes are to protect consumer rights and prevent anti-competitive practices in the USA. They keep companies from becoming monopolies, and Qualcomm got in its crosshairs earlier this year. The FTC filed a suit against the San Diego-based company, and now they have friends to back them in this fight. Samsung and Intel have filed briefs supporting the FTC’s claims of Qualcomm’s anti-competitive business strategies.
Qualcomm makes some of the best chips in the mobile industry; they also hold a plethora of patents, among which exist some that are essential to modern smartphone systems. The argument is that Qualcomm is trying to create a monopoly by not licensing some of its patented technology to other chip makers.
“Intel is ready, willing, and able to compete on the merits in this market that Qualcomm has dominated for years. But Qualcomm has maintained an interlocking web of abusive patent and commercial practices that subverts competition on the merits. These practices have illegally coerced mobile phone manufacturers into purchasing the chipsets they need from Qualcomm and Qualcomm alone.” -Intel
Samsung also went on to mention its Exynos chipsets are not found in non-Samsung devices due to the fact that Qualcomm is keeping all its essential patents for itself. Meanwhile, Qualcomm claims the FTC’s claims should be dismissed because it’s filled with “fallacies and failures”.
Qualcomm is in for a big battle, and results may impact how the industry moves on in the coming years. Be sure we will keep our eyes open for more details as they show up. Meanwhile, hit the comments and let us where you see this going.