Huawei to Negotiate Royalties From Apple and Samsung for 5G Technology

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Huawei will begin negotiating for royalties from Apple and Samsung for access to its portfolio of patents on 5G technology (via Bloomberg).

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Huawei is the owner of the world’s largest collection of 5G patents and is seeking to charge other large tech companies a “reasonable” fee for access to them, creating a substantial new source of revenue.

Huawei’s Chief Legal Officer, Song Liuping, explained earlier today that the company will negotiate rates and comprehensive cross-licensing agreements with Apple and Samsung, promising to charge lower rates than competitors such as Qualcomm, Ericsson, and Nokia. “It’s natural” for Huawei to capitalize on its patents, Song said.

Per-phone royalties will be capped at $2.50, which is markedly less than Qualcomm’s $7.50 rate that led to a legal battle with Apple over supposedly unfair pricing.

While Apple is currently reliant on Qualcomm and expected to stick with external suppliers for its 5G technology until 2022, the company is rumored to be developing its own 5G modem for introduction on the 2023 iPhone models. Apple is also believed to have begun work on next-generation 6G wireless technologies.

With Apple seeking to move away from reliance on other companies for wireless technologies, it is unclear how a deal with Huawei may pan out. Though Apple could take advantage of Huawei’s expansive portfolio of 5G patents to develop its own wireless technologies, the company’s apparent desire for independence in this area may mire the chances of a sustainable long-term agreement.

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