iGiant bankrolls manufacturers' legal battle royale over patent license fees

Updated The four electronics factories sued by Qualcomm for not paying licensing fees have lodged their own countersuit with the backing of Apple.

In a counter-complaint [PDF] lodged Tuesday in California, Taiwanese manufacturers Pegatron, Compal, Hon Hai, and Wistron allege Qualcomm is trying to force them to pay excessive royalties for patents they aren't even using in their products.

"This lawsuit is yet another chapter of Qualcomm's anticompetitive scheme to dominate modem chip markets, extract supracompetitive royalties, and break its commitments to license its cellular technology on fair, reasonable and nondiscriminatory (FRAND) terms," the gang's court paperwork reads.

"In the past two years alone, three separate foreign antitrust enforcers have declared Qualcomm a monopolist and collectively have fined the company over $1 billion."

The countersuit is being lodged with the support of Apple, which has agreed to cover the costs for each of the four manufacturers should they lose in a jury trial.

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