Apple may have paid Qualcomm $40 per iPhone; accounting for 1/3rd of Qualcomm’s revenue

“If Qualcomm sold its baseband processors at approx. $20 per unit and collected or demanded royalties from Apple amounting to more or less the same amount, that would correspond to $40 per iPhone (or cellular iPad),” Florian Mueller writes for FOSS Patents.

“Since 2015, annual iPhone sales have been north of 200 million units,” Mueller writes. “If one multiplied that number with the $40 hypothesis, that would be a total (even before adding cellular iPads) of $8 billion a year, or roughly a third of Qualcomm’s revenues.”

Mueller writes, “What I have no doubt about is that Apple v. Qualcomm is way bigger than Apple v. Samsung, and if Apple succeeds in getting its terms improved, or if further headway is made on the antitrust front, I wouldn’t be surprised to see Samsung and others seek refunds and price reductions… actually, in that scenario I’d be surprised if it didn’t happen.”

Much more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Literally billions of dollars are at stake in this dispute between Apple and Qualcomm.

In 2017, Qualcomm’s licensing scam — charging a percentage of the total cost of all components in the phone, even non-Qualcomm components — is ludicrous.

Qualcomm’s ridiculous licensing scheme simply has to go!

Conservative groups ask President Trump to terminate FCC lawsuit over Qualcomm patent licensing – January 27, 2016
Qualcomm CEO fires back at Apple: Bring it on – January 26, 2017
Apple sues Qualcomm in China seeking 1 billion yuan – January 25, 2017
Qualcomm comments on Apple’s lawsuits in China – January 25, 2017
Apple’s rebellion against the ‘Qualcomm Tax’ – January 24, 2017
Despite lawsuit, Qualcomm wants to keep doing business – January 24, 2017
Why Apple, the FTC, and others are attacking Qualcomm’s royalty model – January 24, 2017
Here are the most damning parts of Apple’s blockbuster lawsuit against Qualcomm – January 23, 2017
Apple’s legal assault on Qualcomm part of iPhone margin grab – January 23, 2017
Qualcomm says Apple’s claims are ‘baseless’ in response to Cupertino’s $1 billion lawsuit – January 21, 2017
Apple sues Qualcomm for $1 billion over onerous licensing practices – January 20, 2017
Qualcomm exec says FTC ‘rushed’ antitrust lawsuit before President-elect Trump’s inauguration – January 19, 2017
FTC alleges Qualcomm forced Apple into iPhone LTE chip deals – January 18, 2017
FTC charges Qualcomm with monopolizing key smartphone chip; alleges extracted exclusivity from Apple in exchange for reduced patent royalties – January 17, 2017
After eating Intel’s mobile lunch, Apple could next devour Qualcomm’s Baseband Processor business – January 20, 2015
Analyst: Apple’s going to dump Intel modems if they keep lagging Qualcomm – December 5, 2016
Yes, Apple is throttling download speeds for iPhone 7 and 7 Plus Verizon and Sprint versions – November 19, 2016
Apple’s modem choices may leave Verizon iPhone users feeling throttled – November 18, 2016
Tests show iPhone 7 Plus models with Qualcomm modem perform significantly better than those with Intel modem – October 20, 2016


  1. Ancient Microsoft demanded a fee for each PC sold even if it had no Windows OS, right? If so, the legal basis may be different but result the same.

  2. Wall Street loves companies like Qualcomm. Qualcomm knew how to ride on the shoulders of giants while plucking their eyes out at the same time. Sometimes a company needs an edge and a good company takes advantage of any opportunity available. Apple just happened to badly need what Qualcomm had and that was Qualcomm’s opportunity to squeeze as much as they could out of Apple. Will Qualcomm have to pay Apple back anything? If anything, probably a pittance compared to what they’ve made from Apple.

    1. Yeh, sure. Like the Wall Street parasites were regulated by the market so the last big crash never happened, like the tobacco industry were regulated by the market so multi millions of people never died, like the market ensures thousands of toxic chemicals never find their way into our water and air.

  3. So let me get this straight. The entire article is based on a calculation based on a made up cost of $20 and a matching amount for licensing and then claims it could be 1/3 of Qualcomm’s revenue? The article could have easily read 1/6 of Qualcomm’s revenue if the arbitrary cost was $10.

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