Broadcom Corporation, a global leader in semiconductors for wired and wireless communications, announced that a federal judge today issued an injunction against Qualcomm Incorporated's continued infringement of three Broadcom patents.
"We are very pleased with today's ruling, which addresses Qualcomm's improper use of our patented technology covering cellular chips and software for advanced consumer devices," said David A. Dull, Broadcom's Senior Vice President and General Counsel. "Broadcom should not have to compete against companies that use Broadcom's own patented technology against us, and this injunction puts a stop to Qualcomm doing just that."
As ordered by U.S. District Court Judge James V. Selna, the injunction prohibits Qualcomm from making, using and selling certain chipsets and software that infringe the three Broadcom patents. The injunction, effective today, also prohibits Qualcomm from engaging in a broad range of additional activities. According to the terms of the injunction, Qualcomm is prohibited, for example, from advertising, marketing or otherwise promoting; entering or fulfilling product orders; setting, determining or approving terms of sale; providing customer service or technical support; negotiating or entering into licensing, representative, reseller or distributor agreements; developing, designing or manufacturing; writing, modifying or updating software; developing or modifying circuits; writing, modifying or updating hardware description code language; or taping out or preparing documentation for, infringing products.
The Infringed Patents
Broadcom's U.S. Patent No. 6,847,686
Under the terms of the injunction, Qualcomm is prohibited from making, using, selling, offering for sale, and importing so-called third generation (3G) WCDMA and EV-DO chips in its "Enhanced Multimedia" and "Convergence" platforms, and from developing new WCDMA and EV-DO chips that use Broadcom's patented video processing chip architecture. Sales of infringing WCDMA chips and new infringing EV-DO chips are enjoined outright, effective immediately. Provided that Qualcomm pays Broadcom a royalty of 6% of all revenues Qualcomm received and receives for sales of infringing EV-DO chips occurring after May 29, 2007, Qualcomm may continue to sell infringing legacy EV-DO chips to legacy customers of those products during the period between May 29, 2007 and January 31, 2009 only.
Broadcom's U.S. Patent No. 5,657,317
The injunction also prohibits Qualcomm from making, using, selling, offering for sale, and importing EV-DO chips found to infringe Broadcom's patent, and from developing new EV-DO chips using Broadcom's patented simultaneous network access technology, which allows a phone to participate on two or more networks concurrently. Sales of new infringing EV-DO chips are enjoined outright, effective immediately. Provided that Qualcomm pays Broadcom a royalty of 4.5% of all revenues Qualcomm received and receives for sales and imports of infringing phones in the U.S. occurring after May 29, 2007, Qualcomm may continue to sell infringing legacy EV-DO chips to legacy customers of those products during the period between May 29, 2007 and January 31, 2009 only.
Broadcom's U.S. Patent No. 6,389,010
Finally, the injunction prohibits Qualcomm from making, using, selling, offering for sale, and importing infringing cellular devices using its QChat "push-to-talk" software, and from developing new push-to-talk software that infringes Broadcom's patented network selection technology. Sales of new infringing QChat devices are enjoined outright, effective immediately. Provided that Qualcomm pays Broadcom a royalty, in an amount to be determined, of all revenues Qualcomm received and receives for sales and imports of infringing QChat devices occurring after May 29, 2007, Qualcomm may continue to sell infringing legacy QChat devices to legacy customers of those products during the period between May 29, 2007 and January 31, 2009 only.
Broadcom filed the case in District Court in Santa Ana, Calif., in May 2005. On May 29, 2007, a unanimous jury returned a verdict finding that Qualcomm infringed three Broadcom patents and awarded $19.64 million in damages for past infringement.
Judge Selna's order may be accessed at
Other Litigation against Qualcomm
The Santa Ana case is one of several cases in which Broadcom continues to pursue claims against Qualcomm regarding patent infringement, anti-competitive behavior and fraud issues. Qualcomm has either lost or withdrawn all of the patent infringement cases it brought against Broadcom.
Patent Infringement Cases
In addition to the Santa Ana case, the U.S. International Trade Commission ruled earlier this year to ban the importation into the U.S. of new phone models containing infringing Qualcomm chips, along with the chips themselves. On September 12, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit denied Qualcomm's request to stay the effectiveness pending appeal of the ITC's exclusion order that stops the importation into the United States of Qualcomm chips that infringe a Broadcom patent. The Federal Circuit did grant a stay pending appeal as to other parties whose cellular phones containing Qualcomm's infringing chips had been excluded. The Appeals Court made no findings questioning the validity of the patent or its infringement by Qualcomm. Earlier this month, the ITC said it would investigate charges that Qualcomm was violating the agency's order to cease and desist infringing Broadcom's patent.
-- In a separate case in San Diego, Calif., a unanimous federal jury found that Broadcom had not infringed two Qualcomm patents, and the judge in the case subsequently found that Qualcomm engaged in "aggravated litigation misconduct" and "intentional abuse of industry standards bodies" in the case. In October, a U.S. District Court Magistrate Judge held a hearing to address the issue of sanctions related to that misconduct. A decision has not yet issued.
-- In July 2005, Broadcom filed a complaint in New Jersey district court alleging that Qualcomm has violated U.S. antitrust laws by, among other things, encouraging standards bodies to incorporate Qualcomm patented technology into cell phone standards by promising to license those patents on fair, reasonable and non-discriminatory terms, and then reneging on those promises. In August, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit reversed a lower court's dismissal of Broadcom's claims, allowing the antitrust case to go forward. A tentative trial date has been set for June 2009.
-- In October 2005, Broadcom joined five other leading mobile wireless technology companies in filing complaints with the European Commission alleging that Qualcomm has engaged in anticompetitive conduct in the licensing of its patents and the sale of its chipsets for mobile wireless devices and systems. The six companies assert that Qualcomm is violating EU competition law and failing to meet the commitments it made to international standards bodies to license its technology on fair, reasonable and non-discriminatory terms. The European Commission embarked on a preliminary review of the complaints, and on Oct. 1, 2007 announced its intent to allocate priority to its continuing investigation.
-- Broadcom and another wireless technology company have filed complaints similar to those filed in with European Commission before the Korean Fair Trade Commission.