Earlier this week, Qualcomm CEO Steve Mollenkopf made headlines when he said his company was “on the doorstep of a resolution” with Apple, implying a settlement was possible. Now, an Apple attorney is refuting that notion, saying the two companies “are going to need a trial.”
As reported by the San Diego Union-Tribune, Apple attorney William Isaacson told U.S. District Judge Gonzalo Curiel this week that a trial will be necessary. This echoes a Reuters report from last month which claimed Apple had “no plans” to reach a settlement with Qualcomm.
“The parties are going to need a trial,” said Isaacson. “There have been unfortunate articles lately that the parties are close to a settlement, and that is not true. There haven’t been talks in months.”
Further, Judge Curiel has officially set a trial date for the case between Apple and Qualcomm. The trial will begin on April 15th in San Diego federal court. Qualcomm had originally pushed for a February trial, but Cruiel said an April date is needed to “accommodate the court’s schedule.”
It’s possible that Mollenkopf’s interview with CNBC earlier this week was just misconstrued, but now it’s seemingly clear that a settlement between Qualcomm and Apple is out of the question.
Throughout this legal battle, Mollenkopf has remained optimistic about the potential for a business relationship between Qualcomm and Apple – likely due to the disastrous effect losing Apple as a customer is having on Qualcomm’s financials. In the same CNBC interview this week, Mollenkopf said Qualcomm “would love to work with Apple” on 5G technologies, though other reports have indicated Apple is instead working with Intel.
The case centers around Apple’s accusation that Qualcomm is illegally taking a cut of each iPhone sold with Qualcomm’s modem technology inside. Further, Qualcomm alleges that Apple stole trade secrets and gave them to Intel. We should be in for quite the trial come April.
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