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11/26/2007
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Qualcomm Seeks Workaround To Broadcom's Injunction

The development follows a decision by a U.S. District Court judge that found Qualcomm infringed Broadcom's patents.

In an escalation in the ongoing intellectual property war, Qualcomm on Monday said it will seek a workaround for technology a federal jury found infringed Broadcom's patents.

Last week, Broadcom said it will "immediately pursue an injunction against" the Qualcomm products.

Targeting next-generation CDMA2000 EV-DO and WCDMA chips, Broadcom said it will "seek to enjoin Qualcomm from making, using, selling and developing third-generation WCDMA and EV-DO cellular chips that infringe any of the patents."

In July, Qualcomm worked out a deal with its customer Verizon Wireless in which the mobile phone service provider would pay Broadcom up to $200 million for the use of Qualcomm's patent-infringing chips in its handsets; Qualcomm has indicated it will seek to replicate a similar deal with all its customers going forward.

The development follows a decision by U.S. District Court Judge James Selna, who last week reversed an earlier decision to double a $19.6 million judgment meted out against Qualcomm in its litigation with Broadcom.

The judge reversed the previous award -- which totaled $39.3 million doubled -- after an award in another patent infringement case involving Seagate Technology was cut in half; there were some similar circumstances in the two patent infringement cases to warrant the cut in the Broadcom award.

Much of Qualcomm's revenue and profits come from its intellectual property. It has been aggressive in attempting to protect its IP, but some handset manufacturers have complained that the San Diego-based company charges too much for its patents. Qualcomm has also been engaged in long-running patent litigation with Nokia.

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