U.S chipmaker Qualcomm says it believes that Apple remains in infringement of a Chinese court’s orders to stop sales of iPhones in spite of a software update that Apple released on Monday. Qualcomm on December 10 reported that it had won a preceding court order in China banning Apple from sales of some older iPhone models that the court has found violating two Qualcomm software patents. Apple reported the same day, that all of its phones remained on sale in China.
On December 14, Apple gave a report that it would push a software update to its iPhones this week. The California-based company, Cupertino said it believed it was in agreement with the court’s rule, but that it would update its software “to address any possible concern about our compliance with the order.” The update seemed to have been pushed to iPhones on Monday, based on user reports on Twitter, although Apple would not affirm to Reuters that it had been pushed.
“Despite Apple’s efforts to downplay the significance of the order and its claims of various ways it will address the infringement, Apple apparently continues to flout the legal system by violating the injunctions,” Don Rosenberg, Qualcomm’s General counsel, informed Reuters in a statement on Monday. Apple never openly commented last week on reasons it believed its current iPhones for sale in China complied with the court’s proclamation, which relates to patents on software features for swapping between apps on a smartphone and resizing photos before using them as a wallpaper on the phone.
Several media outlets, including CNBC, stated that Apple believed the court’s orders only apply to iPhones running older versions of its iOS operating system. But the court’s orders, a copy of which Qualcomm provided to Reuters, had no reference to operating systems but only centered on software features.
“Apple’s statements following the issuance of the preliminary injunction have been deliberate attempts to obfuscate and misdirect,” Qualcomm’s Rosenberg reported in a statement on Monday. However, Qualcomm believes Apple is still in violation of the court’s orders because Apple continues sales of phones and has not received any definite order from the Chinese court giving it the opportunity to do so.
“They are legally obligated to immediately cease sales, offers for sale and importation of the devices identified in the orders and to prove compliance in court,” Rosenberg reported in a statement to Reuters in December. When asked by Reuters about Qualcomm’s statements, Apple restated its earlier statements that it believes it is in accordance with the court order.