Qualcomm and China have been at each other's throats for quite a while now due to a patent infringement dispute, and those tensions came to a head earlier this week.
For the unaware, Qualcomm recently convinced a Chinese court to issue a temporary ban on the sale of many of Apple's older smartphones in the country. This would likely not have been a major blow for Apple -- most of its sales probably come from flagship device shipments -- but it seems Qualcomm is out for blood.
After being granted their first request, the company is now reportedly asking Chinese regulators to issue an injunction banning the sale of Apple's newest phones, including the iPhone XR, XS, and XS Max, while their legal battle rages on.
Of course, just because Qualcomm has asked the court for further action to be taken against Apple doesn't mean the request will be granted; nor is there any guarantee that Apple will honour such demands even if they are successful.
Apple is already ignoring the court's previous sales ban due to its belief that the action only applies to devices running iOS 11. The company says the phones affected by the ban, including the iPhone 6S, 6S Plus, 7, 7 Plus, 8, 8 plus and X, have officially been updated to iOS 12, and thus have no chance of infringing Qualcomm's patents.
Update: A Qualcomm spokesperson has reached out to provide us with the following statement regarding Apple's arguments:
The preliminary injunction orders are effective now. The orders aren’t specific to the operating system installed on the phones. Apple made similar arguments in the trial on the merits, and the Court went forward and issued these orders.
It's impossible to say who will win this legal battle in the end, but we'll keep you updated as the situation unfolds.
Image courtesy Getty Images via The Week