The appellate court’s rulings on both the logical flaws in the FTC’s “surcharge theory” and the reasonableness of Qualcomm’s procompetitive justifications closely follow Professor Nevo’s testimony. The FTC sued Qualcomm under Section 5 of the FTC Act, which has broader latitude to find an “unfair methods of competition” violation than the … The FTC alleged that Qualcomm conditioned the sale of its modem chips on its product manufacturers' willingness to license its patents and enter into exclusive chip deal agreements. The DOJ highlighted its concern that an "overly broad" remedy might "reduce competition and innovation" in markets for 5G technology, which would "exceed the appropriate scope of an equitable remedy." Cal.). In a suit filed in the Northern District of California in January 2017, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) alleged that Qualcomm’s business practices relating to its licensing of patents and its selling of cellular modem chips were anticompetitive. The FTC alleged that Qualcomm abused its dominant position in two modem chip markets by refusing to license its standard essential patents (SEPs) in wireless technology to rival chip manufacturers. Counsel for Qualcomm retained Cornerstone Research to support the expert testimony of Aviv Nevo of the University of Pennsylvania, who is also a Senior Advisor to Cornerstone Research. The FTC's lawsuit against Qualcomm has also led to the airing of an apparent conflict between the FTC and the Department of Justice's (DOJ) Antitrust Division. The FTC case, filed in 2017, is among numerous challenges to Qualcomm’s practices from competitors, customers and regulators worldwide. May 22, 2019 10:08 a.m. PT. This week the FTC — under a new Chairman and with an entirely new set of Commissioners — finished unwrapping its present, and rested its case in the trial begun earlier this month in FTC v Qualcomm. FTC v Qualcomm does precisely what a unanimous Court refused to do in Trinko —create a new, broader exception to the proposition that there is no duty to deal with competitors. This leaves intact the panel’s unanimous decision which reversed and vacated the district court ruling in its entirety. Jan 17, 2019. [1] Main Opinion, Page 215, Line 19 at 757. our privacy policy page. In a highly unusual move, the U.S. Department of Justice Antitrust Division (DOJ) recently filed a statement of interest in the Federal Trade Commission (FTC)’s unfair competition case against Qualcomm. [10] Case No. Kevin Trainer, a law clerk at White & Case, and Samuel Vallejo, a summer associate at White & Case, also contributed to this publication. The district court ruled that Qualcomm acted with “anticompetitive malice” in its licensing tactics, and entered an injunction requiring Qualcomm to renegotiate its current license agreements and prohibiting future anticompetitive licensing practices. Qualcomm exercised that power, the FTC contended, in the form of excessive licensing fees to product manufacturers, its customers. Shara Tibken. The FTC challenged several of Qualcomm’s patent licensing practices and sought to reduce the royalties it collected from makers of cellular devices. The Court noted that many of Qualcomm's premium LTE modem chips are required by "OEMs- producing premium handsets" and that there are no "available sub… [8]. 1 The Court concluded that as a result of its licensing practices, Qualcomm is a monopoly, and that its conduct is an "unreasonable restraint of trade" constituting "exclusionary conduct" under the Sherman Act, and therefore the FTC Act. Recent oral arguments heard before the Ninth Circuit in FTC v. Qualcomm signaled significant skepticism about the lower court ruling that would upend the … For example, Professor Nevo explained that any supposed “surcharge” would be chip neutral, meaning that the royalty was the same regardless of whether the original equipment manufacturer (OEM) used a Qualcomm chip or a competitor’s chip. At that time, we characterized the district court’s order and injunction as either “a trailblazing application of the antitrust laws” or “an improper excursion beyond the outer limits of the Sherman Act.” Id. [6] Main Opinion, Page 85, Line 18-26 But on August 11, a three-judge panel -- Judge Rawlinson from Nevada, Judge Callahan, and Judge Stephen Murphy, III, who is a U.S. District Court judge from Michigan sitting by designation -- it was a 3-0 vote. § Apple Inc. v. Qualcomm Inc., 3:17-cv-00108 (S.D. This publication is protected by copyright. Today’s case is the recent Ninth Circuit decision on FTC v. Qualcomm. The district court’s original ruling for the FTC would have stopped Qualcomm immediately, but Bloomberg reports that Judge Lucy Koh’s order was held to give Qualcomm time to appeal. Posted in Antitrust, Court Orders, District Courts, Federal Trade Commission, Litigation. The FTC argued that if Qualcomm was not subject to an antitrust duty to deal under Aspen Skiing, the company still engaged in anticompetitive conduct … We now hold that the district court went beyond the scope of the Sherman Act, and we reverse. FTC v. Qualcomm, Antitrust, and Intellectual Property. The FTC split 2 to 2, with the Chairperson recusing himself because Chair’s former law firm had represented Qualcomm. This has been a saga of a lot of time and pain. On Wednesday, the Ninth Circuit filed an order whereby Circuit Judge Johnnie B. Rawlinson and Circuit Judge Consuelo M. Callahan vote to deny the … The San … Finally, the FTC accused Qualcomm of engaging in certain exclusive deals, foreclosing competition. Counsel for Qualcomm also retained Professor Nevo for the cases Apple v. Qualcomm and Qualcomm v. Korea Fair Trade Commission (KFTC). On August 11, 2020, in FTC v. Qualcomm, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit reversed a May 21, 2019 judgment by the U.S. District Court… By Edward S. Whang on December 3, 2020 Posted in Antitrust, Appellate, Telecommunications. In this short essay, I review and evaluate the court’s decision in FTC v. Qualcomm. © 2019 White & Case LLP. In an ongoing series of posts by both regular bloggers and guests, Truth on the Market offers analysis of the FTC v.Qualcomm antitrust case. Qualcomm is a … Over 30 years of our mobile invention has led to the Invention Age. 21 months ago. Case No. The case FTC v. Qualcomm Inc. dealt with this issue where the United States’ Federal Trade Commission (FTC) sued Qualcomm for anti-competitive and monopolistic practices. Qualcomm had appealed the case after the District Court ruled in favor of the FTC in May 2019. FTC v Qualcomm does precisely what a unanimous Court refused to do in Trinko—create a new, broader exception to the proposition that there is no duty to deal with competitors. At trial, Professor Nevo addressed numerous issues, including a number of shortcomings in the FTC’s surcharge theory. First, the FTC alleged that Qualcomm had considerable market power in the premium LTE modem chip market. The trial underscored the importance of contemporaneous documents and customer evidence. 2 Federal Trade Commission v. Qualcomm Inc., 2018 WL 5848999, Nov. 6, 2018, N.D. Cal. Qualcomm is a monopoly and has to change the way it does business, a US district court judge ruled late o n May 21. 2019). The court denied Qualcomm's motion to dismiss and found that the FTC had alleged a valid antitrust complaint, and they agreed to the FTC's motion for partial of summary judgment, finding that Qualcomm did have a duty to provide licenses on fair, reasonable, and nondiscriminatory, or FRAN terms, for any patents declared to a couple of certain standard development organizations. The dispute in FTC v. Qualcomm centered on the FTC's allegations regarding Qualcomm's "no license, no chips" policy. Judge Koh issued an injunction requiring Qualcomm not only to renegotiate its existing chip supply and licensing agreements with its customers, but also begin negotiating licenses with its competitors, i.e., other chip manufacturers, which Qualcomm had previously excluded. FTC v. Qualcomm Inc., 935 F.3d 752 (9th Cir. Attorney Advertising. 2021 Cornerstone Research, Copyright © FTC v. Qualcomm Inc., 935 F.3d 752 (9th Cir. The dispute in FTC v. Qualcommcentered on the FTC's allegations regarding Qualcomm's "no license, no chips" policy. Twitter Facebook LinkedIn Email Print. The FTC argued that if Qualcomm was not subject to an antitrust duty to deal under Aspen Skiing, the company still engaged in anticompetitive conduct in violation of Section 2 … However, the court’s duty-to-deal analysis sits on shakier ground, omitting consideration of potential immunity under the Patent Act and sidestepping thorny questions on the appropriate source of law. Prior results do not guarantee a similar outcome. Consequently, it would not affect the OEM’s decision of which chip to purchase. Federal Trade Commission v. Qualcomm Inc. Side note: If you would like to know the full background of the case, follow this FTC vs. Qualcomm article series. The FTC alleged that these … Judge Lucy Koh's ruling found that Qualcomm's licensing practices have "strangled competition in the CDMA and premium LTE modem chip markets for years and harmed rivals, OEMs and end-consumers in the process." The appellate court unanimously ruled in favor of Qualcomm, citing reasons that closely followed our expert’s testimony. A judge rules the chipmaker is a monopoly, dealing a blow to Qualcomm. [12] Although Judge Koh found some of the remedies requested by the FTC to be "either vague or not necessary," [11] she granted the majority of the FTC's initial requests, including the imposition of monitoring procedures, a prohibition of the challenged restrictions on licensing and OEM exclusivity, and the requirement to make licenses available on fair, reasonable and non-discriminatory terms. Qualcomm's fight with the FTC ran concurrent with its legal battle with Apple. The case was tried over ten days in January 2019 and, in May 2019, the court issued a decision finding in favor of the FTC and issuing a permanent injunction against Qualcomm. On August 11, 2020, in FTC v. Qualcomm, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit reversed a May 21, 2019 judgment by the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California and vacated the district court’s worldwide, permanent injunction prohibiting several of Qualcomm’s … Introduction. On August 11, 2020, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals reversed a decision of Judge Koh sitting in the Northern District of California that certain of Qualcomm’s business practices relating to its standards essential patents (SEPs) breached the antitrust laws. more about our use of cookies on Coverage of federal case FTC v. Qualcomm Inc., case number 19-16122, from Appellate - 9th Circuit Court. Introduction. While the terms of the settlement remain confidential, a Qualcomm regulatory filing indicates that Qualcomm will receive at least US$4.5 billion from Apple for missed royalty and licensing payments under the terms. Qualcomm is also very pleased that the full Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals has denied the FTC’s petition for rehearing. The decision validates our business model and licensing program and underscores the tremendous contributions that Qualcomm has made to the industry. Among other allegations, the FTC claimed that Qualcomm’s royalty rates are unreasonably high and “impose an artificial and anticompetitive surcharge” on its chip market rivals’ sales. The FTC’s January 2017 complaint alleged that certain of Qualcomm’s practices relating to its patent licensing and modem chipset businesses violated the federal antitrust laws. Read Automobile makers Ford, Honda, Daimler AG and Tesla, joined by chip makers Intel and MediaTek, called for a rehearing of the FTC case against Qualcomm in what is called an “en banc hearing.” According to the companies, the reversal of the FTC case against Qualcomm by the U.S. Ninth District Court in … The district court ruled in favor of the FTC. FEDERAL TRADE COMMISSION v. QUALCOMM INCORPORATED. The district court ruled that Qualcomm acted with “anticompetitive malice” in its licensing tactics, and … The recent Ninth Circuit panel decision reversing the district court’s judgment in FTC v.Qualcomm, Inc., has important implications for the role of antitrust in standard essential patent (SEP) licensing. Among other things, the FTC claimed that Qualcomm … Parties, docket activity and news coverage of federal case Federal Trade Commission v. Qualcomm Incorporated, case number 5:17-cv-00220, from California Northern Court. Authors. 2019). The former case settled in April 2019 just as trial began. For the latter case, Professor Nevo testified before the Seoul High Court in May 2019. In a decision issued on August 11, 2020, a three-judge panel unanimously reversed the ruling, stating “the district court’s ‘anticompetitive surcharge’ theory fails to state a cogent theory of anticompetitive harm.” The panel noted that Qualcomm’s practices “do not impose an anticompetitive surcharge on rivals’ modem chip sales. FTC v. Qualcomm Inc., 935 F.3d 752 (9th Cir. The FTC only issued the original complaint after a split vote by the FTC Commissioners in the last days of the Obama Administration, with a rare dissenting written statement by then Commissioner Ohlhausen. FEDERAL TRADE COMMISSION v. QUALCOMM INCORPORATED. A wave of setbacks for the FTC. On August 11, 2020, in FTC v. Qualcomm, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit reversed a May 21, 2019 judgment by the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California and vacated the district court's worldwide, permanent injunction prohibiting several of Qualcomm's core business practices. The analysis of Qualcomm’s exclusive dealing is sound and very likely correct. The latest chapter in this saga involves an antitrust suit brought by the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) against chip manufacturer Qualcomm, which the Commission recently won in district court. The foundational technology and intelligence we put into 3G and 4G is bringing us 5G, connected cars, and a true Internet of Things. Qualcomm appealed the decision to the Ninth Circuit. The statement asks the court to order additional briefing and hold a hearing on a remedy if it finds Qualcomm liable for anticompetitive abuses in connection with its patent licensing program. 2021 Cornerstone Research, Bankruptcy and Financial Distress Litigation, Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA), Labor, Discrimination, and Algorithmic Bias, Telecommunications, Media, and Entertainment. That ruling said Qualcomm wrongfully suppressed competitors in the phone chip market by … Dissenting Statement of Commissioner Maureen K. Ohlhausen regarding the FTC filing a case against Qualcomm. 5:17-cv-00220, Document 1487, Page 5, Line 6 Judge Koh rules that Qualcomm violated FTC Act (FTC v. Qualcomm) By David Long on May 22, 2019. This website uses cookies for performance and functionality. Professor Nevo testified to several shortcomings in the FTC’s theory of harm and to several procompetitive justifications for Qualcomm’s practices. Qualcomm patented processors … For more about Qualcomm, SEPP, FRAND, Apple, Intel, and the FTC case, registered subscribers can read FTC v. Qualcomm: Who Wins, Who Loses, Apple: In with Qualcomm, Out with Intel, and Qualcomm-Apple Legal Battle Threatens Innovation. Antitrust and Competition, Telecommunications, Media, and Entertainment, Cravath, Swaine & Moore; Morgan, Lewis & Bockius; and Keker, Van Nest & Peters. [3] Main Opinion, Page 37, Line 27 The Court noted that many of Qualcomm's premium LTE modem chips are required by "OEMs- producing premium handsets" and that there are no "available substitutes" for these chips. The FTC challenged several of Qualcomm’s patent licensing practices and sought to reduce the royalties it collected from makers of cellular devices. [8] Main Opinion, Page 232, 26 The appellate court’s rulings on both the logical flaws in the FTC’s “surcharge theory” and the reasonableness of Qualcomm’s procompetitive justifications closely follow Professor Nevo’s testimony. On May 21, 2019, the United States District Court for the Northern District of California found that Qualcomm violated the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) Act, in an antitrust decision significant to licensing standard-essential patents (SEPs) under fair, reasonable and non-discriminatory (FRAND) terms. In the complaint, the FTC raised several issues. Qualcomm patented processors and other standard-essential technology used in mobile devices, mobile operating systems and cellular networks, and licensed its technology to more than 340 product companies, including phone vendors. The dispute in FTC v. Qualcomm centered on the FTC's allegations regarding Qualcomm's "no license, no chips" policy. Further, the FTC argued that Qualcomm violated its SEP obligations by refusing to license its patents on FRAND terms. 3 The FTC, after getting a full contingent of Commissioners, reconsidered the wisdom of bringing the case. cmaier. FEDERAL TRADE COMMISSION, Plaintiff, v. QUALCOMM INCORPORATED, Defendant. Docket for FTC v. Qualcomm Inc., 19-16122 — Brought to you by the RECAP Initiative and Free Law Project, a non-profit dedicated to creating high quality open legal information. 1 Last month, Apple and Qualcomm resolved their dispute over Qualcomm's same "no license, no chips" strategies at issue in this case. The vote, 2-1, was the least likely to signal a meritorious case in the data set, while bringing it in the lame duck period suggests political considerations produced it. Qualcomm. Qualcomm-FTC lawsuit: Everything you need to know. After some initial success at the United States District Court for the Northern District of California (US District Court), FTC has constantly seen setbacks, and at times, very harsh rebukes at the Ninth Circuit. And lastly, the Court required Qualcomm to submit to compliance and FTC monitoring procedures for seven years. This appears to be the end of the FTC's case against Qualcomm, and a win for the company. FTC v. Qualcomm Inc., 935 F.3d 752 (9th Cir. However, as demonstrated by the DOJ's involvement here, the antitrust agencies are not necessarily aligned, and the exact contours of the Trump Administration's enforcement priorities remain unclear. I . On May 21, 2019, Judge Lucy Koh of the US District Court for the Northern District of California issued her decision in the case. FTC v. Qualcomm Case Not Quite Done by Chris Taylor | Sep 11, 2020. Qualcomm is one the leading companies in modem chip manufacturing, especially 5G technology. Federal Trade Commission v. Qualcomm Incorporated United States District Court Northern District of California, San Jose Division No. Qualcomm, an innovator in cellular technology, both licenses its patented technology and sells cellular modem chips that embody portions of its technology. [12] Main Opinion, Page 226, Line 25. Professor Nevo also described a number of procompetitive justifications for Qualcomm’s practices. A ten-day bench trial was held in January 2019. Deep Dive Episode 94 – FTC v. Qualcomm. FTC V. QUALCOMM 9 OPINION CALLAHAN, Circuit Judge: This case asks us to draw the line between anticompetitive behavior, which is illegal under federal antitrust law, and hypercompetitive behavior, which is not. On August 11, 2020, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals reversed a decision of Judge Koh sitting in the Northern District of California that certain of Qualcomm’s business practices relating to its standards essential patents (SEPs) breached the antitrust laws. 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