Court rules, ‘The 1 trillion won fine imposed on Qualcomm is justifiable’
Court rules, ‘The 1 trillion won fine imposed on Qualcomm is justifiable’
  • Jung So-yeon
  • 승인 2019.12.05 12:58
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The court ruled in favor of the Fair Trade Commission (FTC) in a legal battle between the FTC and Qualcomm over 1 trillion won in fines.

The Seoul High Court held a ruling on the cancellation of the lawsuit, including a correction order issued by Qualcomm's headquarters, Qualcomm Technology Inc. and Qualcomm CDMA Technology Asia-Pacific PTE LTD against the FTC on Dec. 4.

The court viewed Qualcomm as violating the fair trade law by abusing its dominant market position. In particular, it also judged that Qualcomm violated the International Fair, Reasonable And Non-Discriminatory (FRAND), which provides Standard Essential Patent (SEP) in a fair and rational manner and without discrimination to businesses that want to use patents.

As a result, the court said the 1.03 trillion won in FTC's fine on Qualcomm is deemed legitimate. 

Until now, the FTC has claimed that Qualcomm is using SEP in the mobile communications technology sector exclusively owned by itself to form an unfair trading structure with the manufacturer.

Qualcomm took advantage of the fact that SEP cannot be replaced with other technologies, and it secured high profits by refusing to provide licenses to chipset manufacturers, and forcing cell phone manufacturers to use licenses on condition of supplying chipsets.

Earlier in December 2016, the FTC fined Qualcomm 1.03 trillion won. It also issued a correction order to Qualcomm to sign a license with a competing modem chip manufacturer and provide mobile phone manufacturers with modem chips regardless of their licenses.

In response, Qualcomm filed a complaint in February 2017, claiming that the FTC sanctions were unfair.

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