Apple Will Change iPhone in China to Avoid Sales Ban

Posted on December 15, 2018 by Paul Thurrott in Apple, iOS with 19 Comments

Apple says that it will make two major changes to the iPhone software in China to avoid a patent-infringement sales ban. But Qualcomm, which owns the patents in question, says that Apple must immediately stop selling the affected iPhones in that country.

“[Apple] is legally obligated to immediately cease sales, offers for sale, and importation of the devices identified in the orders and to prove compliance in court,” Qualcomm executive vice president and general counsel Don Rosenberg said of Apple’s ploy.

Qualcomm has asked the Fuzhou Intermediate People’s Court, which had earlier ruled in its favor, to enforce its injunction against iPhone sales.

Apple, meanwhile, has asked the court to reconsider its ruling since the firm would lose millions of dollars each day should a ban be enforced; Apple told the court that it made $13.3 billion on iPhone sales in China in the first quarter of 2018.

Apple also said that it would remove two infringing software features from the iPhone next week in order to meet Qualcomm’s legal rights. These features are related to app switching and using touch to change the size and appearance of photos.

As you may recall, Qualcomm revealed last Monday that it had won a patent infringement ruling against Apple in China that required Apple to immediately stop selling the iPhone in that country. But a few days later, it became clear that this ruling only applied to iPhones running iOS 11. So Qualcomm launched a new suit aimed at halting the sale of the new iPhone XS, XS Max, and XR.



Tagged with ,

Join the discussion!


Don't have a login but want to join the conversation? Become a Thurrott Premium or Basic User to participate

Comments (19)

19 responses to “Apple Will Change iPhone in China to Avoid Sales Ban”

  1. jimchamplin

    Do software patents have to include working code to prove that the "innovator" actually did the thing, or are they actually allowed to be so vague - which allows them to be used as anti-competitive cudgels - that they're useless? Seems to me that for a software patent to be useful and valid it would need to be reproducible.

    Any lesser standard is simply corruption at work.

  2. ragingthunder

    I am surprised thurrott cannot get rid of spams in comments. There are a 1001 tools for wordpress to filter comments - askimet, disqus, etc etc. What the hell is going on?!

  3. NT6.1

    I'm so glad Apple is losing hard. They deserve it.

  4. SenorGravy

    I don't think I've ever seen a company that thinks laws don't apply to it as Apple. Don't wanna pay Royalties? Then don't infringe on valid patents. No sympathy here.

    • red.radar

      In reply to SenorGravy:

      Come on .... put the fan boyism to the side. This is part of a bigger legal war where apple is working to undo Qualcomm’s cellular modem monopoly.

      qualcom lost in EU and American courts and has since been doing the world tour to be a thorn in apples side.

      look at the patents ... they are so vague and stupid and have nothing to do with Qualcomm’s core business. This is an attack by Qualcomm’s to inflict damage for them not using their modems.

  5. AlyssaPatterson

    People love to by Apple’s iPhone because they can get ever-growing, sprawling ecosystem of software and services from APPLE which allow to do more flexibility with the products. 


    Help with statistics assignment