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Qualcomm Sues Broadcom in Escalating Dispute Over Patents

October 19, 2005|From Bloomberg News

Qualcomm Inc. has sued Broadcom Corp. for alleged patent infringement in an escalating legal battle between the two rivals.

The lawsuit accuses Broadcom of improperly using Qualcomm's technology related to compressing video files so that they can be more easily transmitted. The case was filed Friday in U.S. District Court in San Diego, where Qualcomm is based.

Broadcom has filed three complaints against Qualcomm since May; Qualcomm sued Broadcom in July. The dispute began when Broadcom, which makes semiconductors for cable-television set-top boxes, started to branch into chips for mobile phones, a market in which Qualcomm trails only Texas Instruments Inc.

"We were in discussions with Broadcom before all of this started about licensing Qualcomm technology," Qualcomm spokesman Jeremy James said. He declined to comment on any settlement talks.

Bill Blanning, a spokesman for Irvine-based Broadcom, said in an e-mailed statement that it was "common for defendants in patent cases to respond with countersuits."

"Broadcom has asserted 16 patents in the International Trade Commission and various U.S. district courts against Qualcomm's products," Blanning said. "The ITC launched an investigation of Qualcomm based upon our complaint, and the case against Qualcomm will be going to trial early next year in the ITC."

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