After months – years really – of battling, Apple and Qualcomm are set to go to trial beginning today. Jury selection starts today in what could be one of the most pivotal cases in both company’s histories. At stake is billions of dollars that both company’s claim that the other owes them in royalty payments. The case is likely to take months to reach a verdict and even then, you can fully expect the loser to appeal.
This all started two years ago when Apple, along with manufactures Foxconn, Pegatron, Wistron, and Compal, claimed they had overpaid Qualcomm some $9 billion in royalties. The Cupertino company at the time stated that they had been double paying.
Qualcomm, of course, disagrees. They claim that the same group of manufactures owe them some $7.5 billion in unpaid royalties and they further argue that Apple should be held liable for a doubled penalty of at least $15 billion.
How this will ultimately play out is not clear but there already have been preliminary losses for Qualcomm in court leading up to this landmark case. Should the chip manufacture lose this case, it could have devastating consequences. Apple, for their part, could absorb a larger hit but it would also damage them financially.