Court forces Apple to stop selling older iPhones in Germany

Apple will reportedly stop selling older iPhones in Germany after a local court ruled that the company's products had infringed on a Qualcomm patent.

Apple will pull iPhone 7 and iPhone 8 models from the company's 15 retail stores in Germany, the company told Reuters. "We are of course disappointed by this verdict and we plan to appeal," Apple said.

On Thursday, a district court in Munich ruled that the iPhones models infringed on a Qualcomm patent dealing with a smartphone power-saving feature. As a result, the court granted Qualcomm's request for an injunction against the affected models.

The ban marks the second court victory for Qualcomm in its patent battle with Apple, which threatens the sale of iPhones in certain markets across the world. Earlier this month, a court in China also ruled in favor of Qualcomm and granted an injunction against Apple, barring the sale of certain iPhone models.

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"Two respected courts in two different jurisdictions just in the past two weeks have now confirmed the value of Qualcomm's patents and declared Apple an infringer, ordering a ban on iPhones in the important markets of Germany and China," Qualcomm's general counsel Don Rosenberg said in a statement.

According to Reuters, the affected iPhone models sold in Germany have been using chips from an Apple supplier called Qorvo, which the court ruled was at fault for violating Qualcomm's patent on the power-saving feature.

Qualcomm told PCMag today's court ruling also applies to Apple's "European Union entities." It also means Apple must pay monetary damages, which will be determined at a later date.

Apple didn't immediately respond to a request for comment. But the court losses in Germany and China haven't affected the company's newest iPhones, the XS and XR.

Apple has also downplayed the impact of the court ruling in China, saying the court-enforced ban only applies to iPhones running iOS 11, not iOS 12. As a result, the company continues to sell all iPhones models in the country after rolling out a software update to iPhones in China that'll prevent the devices from infringing on the Qualcomm patents in question.

Nevertheless, Qualcomm continues to wage its legal battle against Apple and has been seeking a court injunction in China to get the company's newest iPhones also banned over patent infringement.

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