FTC should settle Qualcomm intellectual property suit and protect U.S.-led Internet of Things

Feb. 6, 2019, Fairfax, Va.—Americans for Limited Government President Rick Manning today issued the following statement urging the Federal Trade Commission to immediately settle a lawsuit against Qualcomm over the collection of agreed upon fees for use of its intellectual property:

“It is ironic that the Trump Administration has staked out the protection of intellectual property as a primary concern in our trade relations with China, yet, the Federal Trade Commission is suing San Diego based Qualcomm to break its licensing agreements for intellectual property that Apple has tired of paying for, even though they continue to benefit from that technology.  It is shocking however, that the FTC has used the Chinese megafirm Huawei as one of its key witnesses opposing Qualcomm’s licenses.  Apparently, the FTC does not realize or care that the licensing agreements for past technological innovations are what pays for Qualcomm’s research in creating the chips for the 5G future, and that Huawei is their number one competitor.  The FTC suit would effectively cripple the only U.S. company who is competing in developing the Internet of Things to the lasting detriment of the interests of the United States.

“While the FTC is an independent government body, their case is a disaster for American interests and they need to settle it now before more harm is done.  Policy makers from across the political spectrum need to understand that the race for the future of the connected world is at stake and Chinese control of every aspect of the Internet of Things is extremely dangerous.  All Qualcomm seems to be asking is that they be allowed to collect fees which were agreed upon by business partners which wanted to use innovations which they developed.  This is the essence of intellectual property. It is also how U.S. businesses should run, relying upon their own ingenuity and productivity to profit rather than relying upon government handouts and lawfare.

“The FTC is reportedly in long overdue settlement talks with Qualcomm.  The FTC should settle this lawsuit immediately and end its attack on the only company positioned to prevent the Chinese from running roughshod over the Internet of the future.”

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