Apple will send software updates to several iPhone models in China to remove features disputed by Qualcomm as illegal. According to the report from Bloomberg, Qualcomm has asked for sales ban for Apple iPhones XS and iPhone XR post winning preliminary injunction against older models.
Apple made a statement to Reuters, stating that the software "updates" will be released to the affected devices in China next week.
The request adds the injunction could force Apple to settle with Qualcomm. The iPhone maker has appealed against the decision.
The two United States companies are locked in a global dispute over licensing fees that Qualcomm charges for use of technology that the chip maker says underpins all modern phone systems. In all fairness, Apple isn't technically wrong. It is a case that is a part of the global dispute between both the Apple and Qualcomm. A third patent initially cited, Apple pointed out, had been invalidated. Most have since struck an agreement with the USA company. After bringing suit against Apple past year in an effort to ban iPhone sales in the U.S., Qualcomm came under fire from companies such as Intel for anti-competitive behavior. Apple's settlement with Qualcomm will result in the latter going back to its old licensing technique with all smartphone vendors which would lead to "unrecoverable losses". While the court order doesn't make specific reference to the software of the banned devices, Apple does have a leg to stand on.
"Apple and many other companies, consumers, and government will suffer truly irreparable harm", the company said in the filing.
On Monday, Qualcomm announced that a Chinese court had banned the sale of most iPhone models.
The U.S. International Trade Commission has also said that it plans to review a previous ruling stating that a ban on iPhone imports was not in the interests of the general public - even if in the event that Apple infringed on a Qualcomm patent.
However, Apple does not mince words when describing how destructive an Apple sales ban in China would be.