Broadcom sues Qualcomm over patents

Broadcom is suing Qualcomm, alleging infringement of 10 patents.

Communications chip vendor Broadcom has sued Qualcomm, seeking to halt the manufacture and sale of key Qualcomm chips.

The suit, filed in the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California, alleges that Qualcomm has infringed 10 Broadcom patents. Broadcom has also filed a complaint with the U.S. International Trade Commission (ITC), seeking to ban the importation of some foreign-manufactured Qualcomm products that allegedly infringe Broadcom patents, according to a Broadcom statement Thursday.

Broadcom is one of the world's largest vendors of communications silicon. It supplies chips for a wide variety of wired and wireless communications systems, including cellular and VOIP (voice over Internet Protocol) as well as cable, satellite, DSL (digital subscriber line) and LAN and carrier infrastructure. Qualcomm, in San Diego, pioneered CDMA (Code Division Multiple Access) and develops chipsets for the cellular technology.

Broadcom said it is seeking unspecified monetary damages from Qualcomm and a permanent injunction to ban the manufacture and sale of its core baseband and RF (radio frequency) chips, including chips for multimedia and for the QChat VOIP technology, which is used for cellular push-to-talk systems.

In its complaint filed with the ITC on Thursday, Broadcom alleged Qualcomm has engaged in unfair trade practices by importing chips and other products that infringe five Broadcom patents. It wants the agency to investigate Qualcomm and ultimately issue an exclusion order to stop imports of those products into the U.S., as well as a cease-and-desist order to stop further sales of the allegedly infringing products, according to the statement.

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