Qualcomm was fined 854 million dollars for violating South Korean antitrust laws
The Korean fair trade Commission (KFTC) fined the company Qualcomm to 854 million dollars, claiming that the American manufacturer has broken the law, licensing patents and selling the chip with the function of the modem. By the way, this is the largest fine ever imposed by the South Korean antitrust regulator.
According to KFTC, Qualcomm has abused its dominant position on the market, forcing smartphone manufacturers to pay a license fee for unreasonably broad patents with the purchase of the modem chips.
In addition, Qualcomm restricted competition by refusing to license patents that are essential to standards that their competitors, including Intel, Samsung Electronics and MediaTek. This Qualcomm not only undermine the product sales of these companies, but also makes them vulnerable to patent lawsuits.
In addition to the fine, the Commission ordered Qualcomm to conclude licensing contracts in a fair and non-discriminatory terms and to renegotiate existing contracts to supply chips. Note that purchasers of Qualcomm modem chips are, in particular, Apple, Intel, Samsung and Huawei Technologies.
Meanwhile, the KFTC begins investigation of Qualcomm in 2014, in response to a complaint received from an unnamed market participants.
Reacting to the decision of the Commission, Qualcomm announced that this decision will enter into force only after it will be published all the details. Before publication can take from four to six months. Once that happens, and Qualcomm will have all the information, she will appeal. According to Qualcomm, the Commission’s decision is unreasonable and contrary to the facts.
Sources: Reuters, Qualcomm