ITC judge recommends U.S. ban on Apple iPhone

ITC judge recommends U.S. ban on Apple iPhone
We await a ruling to be made later today by the full International Trade Commission (ITC) as to whether there should be a sales and import ban placed on certain iPhone models in the U.S. This ruling is essentially a review of a decision made last September by Administrative Judge Thomas Pender. He ruled that Apple infringed on a Qualcomm patent related to a power saving feature on the iPhone, but said it was not in the public interest to issue an exclusion order against Apple. The review is required under ITC rules.

Meanwhile, in a totally separate case, Bloomberg reports that ITC Judge MaryJoan McNamara ruled today that some Apple iPhone models using Intel modem chips infringe on a couple of Qualcomm patents. Unlike Judge Pender, Judge McNamara says that she is recommending an import ban on certain iPhone models imported from China. Just like the decision made last September, today's decision must be reviewed by the entire commission. A final ruling is expected by July. It should be noted that the judge found that Apple did not infringe on two other patents that they were alleged by Qualcomm to have used without a license.

The original filing by Qualcomm was related to patents that it claimed were not licensed by Apple for the iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus, iPhone 8, iPhone 8 Plus and the iPhone X. Only models using an Intel modem chip would be affected. Even with this information in mind, it is unknown which iPhone models would be covered by the exclusion order recommended in Judge McNamara's ruling.

In the earlier case, which we should get a final ruling on today, Judge Pender agreed with Apple that banning the import and sales of Apple iPhones containing an Intel modem would hurt competition between Qualcomm and Intel. Apple said that this competition is necessary for the continued development of 5G, the next-generation of wireless connectivity. Intel has said that if an exclusion order is issued against Apple, it would be forced to exit the modem chip business.

From 2011-2015, Apple used modem chips from Qualcomm on all iPhone models. In 2016-2017, both Qualcomm and Intel supplied Apple with this component. Last year, due to a number of lawsuits that Qualcomm filed against Apple (and vice versa), Apple used only modem chips from Intel on the 2018 iPhones.

The president still has to sign off an any exclusion order that the entire ITC rules in favor of

Even if the earlier case, and today's case, result in a final decision banning sales and imports of certain iPhone models in the states, the order is sent to the president. Donald Trump could sign off on the exclusion order, rule against it, or let it lapse after 60 days. In 2013, President Barack Obama vetoed an ITC order that would have placed an import ban on certain iPhone and iPad models. Obama said that because the Samsung patents that Apple was found to have infringed were standard-essential patents, he decided to veto the ban. These are patents that manufacturers need to use to make sure that their products meet technical standards for an industry.

Later that same year, with the roles reversed, Obama let an ITC import ban against Samsung take effect. In that case, Apple successfully accused Samsung of infringing on a pair of its patents. However, the ban was imposed against older Samsung handsets.

The entire ruling can be found by tapping on this link.

Related phones

iPhone 7
  • Display 4.7" 750 x 1334 pixels
  • Camera 12 MP / 7 MP front
  • Processor Apple A10 Fusion, Quad-core, 2340 MHz
  • Storage 256 GB
  • Battery 1960 mAh(14h 3G talk time)
iPhone 7 Plus
  • Display 5.5" 1080 x 1920 pixels
  • Camera 12 MP / 7 MP front
  • Processor Apple A10 Fusion, Quad-core, 2340 MHz
  • Storage 256 GB
  • Battery 2900 mAh(21h 3G talk time)



1. cmdacos

Posts: 4302; Member since: Nov 01, 2016


2. tedkord

Posts: 17452; Member since: Jun 17, 2009

It's not going to happen.

3. User123456789

Posts: 1084; Member since: Feb 22, 2019

Just for curiosity ..... How many companies have gone to justice against Apple in last 7 years?

4. tiz_meh

Posts: 79; Member since: Aug 11, 2017

Ban 'em all

5. darkkjedii

Posts: 31529; Member since: Feb 05, 2011

Hey Venom! The Intel modem s...oh nevermind.

6. darkkjedii

Posts: 31529; Member since: Feb 05, 2011

I don't think it's even possibly in a trillion years gonna happen.

7. CTHR100

Posts: 24; Member since: May 12, 2017

I don't see why Intel would leave the industry over this. 5g has nothing to do with those iPhone models. R&d for 5g is still very doable

8. ph00ny

Posts: 2065; Member since: May 26, 2011

Another iphone veto incoming?

9. vikingsfootball09

Posts: 112; Member since: Oct 02, 2013

so basically there shouldnt be a u.s. ban on iphones bcuz it is all about public interest? but samsung phones that were banned vs apple years ago does not apply...i find that to be a homer decision than real justice back then...and if no ban is in place for the iphones that are in violation now...for sure apple will always get the homer decision even if found guilty LOL

10. stijnvbml

Posts: 76; Member since: Feb 20, 2013

What? Samsung phones were never Banned in the US, with the logical exception of the Note 7 at some point.

11. vikingsfootball09

Posts: 112; Member since: Oct 02, 2013 banned in the u.s...i followed this ongoing battle with apple...i guess u also didnt know that president obama vetoed a ban on several iphone models due to the so called 'public interest' apple will always get things in their favor even when found guilty....even when a ban is placed on some iphone models...due to 'public interest' lol, what a joke the u.s. justice system.

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