Qualcomm President Derek Aberle, who was closely fighting a legal battle with Apple, has quit after a successful 17-year career. According to a Qualcomm statement late on Thursday, Aberle has decided to quit after he helped drive the company’s overall global strategy and vision as a member of the company’s Executive Committee. Aberle will stay till December 31 for a smooth transition.
“On behalf of the Executive Team, I want to thank Derek for the vision, creativity, dedication, and judgment he brought to the company and wish him all the best in the future,” said Qualcomm CEO Steve Mollenkopf. Over the past 30 years, Qualcomm has invented the core technologies that have enabled the mobile revolution and made all modern smartphones possible.
“I am very proud to have been a part of that tradition of innovation, and of all that we’ve been able to accomplish during my tenure,” added Aberle. Executive Vice President Alex Rogers would now report directly to Qualcomm CEO Mollenkopf. To find a solution to the protracted legal battle between Apple and Qualcomm, the US International Trade Commission (ITC) was set to start a probe into the chip-maker’s claims that Apple violated its patents in devices like the iPhone 7.
Qualcomm has asked the ITC to stop further sales of iPhones equipped with cellular baseband modem processors made by rival chip-producer Intel. The mobile-phone chip-maker claimed that Apple violated potentially six of its patents in how it uses the Intel modems. Apple began using Intel cellular modems for some versions of the iPhone 7 launched last year, with the remaining supplied by Qualcomm.
Apple continues to reassert claims it made in its lawsuit against Qualcomm, saying “the chipmaker supplies Apple with a single connectivity component, but for years has been demanding a percentage of the total cost of our products — effectively taxing Apple’s innovation”.
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