Qualcomm Said to Have Blocked Samsung Exynos Chip Sales to Other Handset Makers

Qualcomm Said to Have Blocked Samsung Exynos Chip Sales to Other Handset Makers
  • Qualcomm has prevented Samsung from selling its SoCs to other makers
  • The licensing deal dates back to 1993
  • Qualcomm's Snapdragon 835 uses Samsung's 10nm FinFET fabrication process

Samsung has been one of the handset makers that has been using Qualcomm chipsets for years now. Though, Samsung has been prevented from selling its in-house Exynos chipsets to other handset makers by none other than Qualcomm, claims a new report.

Samsung has been consistent with its own Exynos-series of processors which get refreshed every year though one of the things that always come across is why the in-house chipset is not used by any third-party vendor. Meizu Pro 5 is however an exception which launched in September 2015 with Samsung's Exynos 7420 processor.

ZDNet's report citing South Korea's Fair Trade Commission claims that Samsung was stopped from selling its in-house Exynos SoC through a patent licensing deal.

The licensing deal dates back to 1993 when South Korea's Fair Trade Commission had reportedly said that Samsung will not sell its modem chipsets to other handset makers.

"In 1993, Samsung Electronics was granted the right to manufacture, sell and use mobile phones using Qualcomm's second-generation mobile communication (CDMA) standard essential patents. Instead, Qualcomm stipulated terms for modem chipsets. Qualcomm and Samsung Electronics said in a contract that Samsung should manufacture modem chipsets for its own procurement but should not sell modem chipsets to other carriers," FTC was quoted.

Notably, Qualcomm's latest Snapdragon 835 is built on the 10nm FinFET fabrication process by Samsung.

Back in December, South Korea's antitrust regulator fined chipmaker KRW 1.03 trillion (roughly $854 million or Rs. 5,821 crores) claiming that Qualcomm's business practices of patent licensing and smartphone modem chip sales hindered competition.

This was not the first instance when Qualcomm was fined for by anti-trust groups. In February 2015, Qualcomm agreed to pay a $975 million fine to Chinese authorities following an antitrust probe alleging anti-competitive behaviour.


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