81 Facts About Qualcomm


Qualcomm is an American multinational corporation headquartered in San Diego, California, and incorporated in Delaware.

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Qualcomm was established in 1985 by Irwin M Jacobs and six other co-founders.

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Qualcomm was created in July 1985 by seven former Linkabit employees led by Irwin Jacobs.

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Qualcomm grew from eight employees in 1986 to 620 employees in 1991, due to demand for Omnitracs.

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Qualcomm was operating at a loss in the 1990s due to its investment in CDMA research.

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Qualcomm had $383 million in annual revenue in 1995 and $814 million by 1996.

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Since the base station division was losing $400M a year, profits skyrocketed in the following year, and Qualcomm was the fastest growing stock on the market with a 2, 621 percent growth over one year.

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Around this time, Qualcomm established offices in Europe, Asia Pacific, and Latin America.

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Qualcomm announced Steven Mollenkopf would succeed Paul Jacobs as CEO in December 2013.

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Mollenkopf said he would expand Qualcomm's focus to wireless technology for cars, wearable devices, and other new markets.

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Qualcomm announced its intent to acquire NXP Semiconductors for $47 billion in October 2016.

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Qualcomm extended a tender offer to NXP at least 29 times pending Chinese approval, before abandoning the deal in July 2018.

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On January 6, 2021, Qualcomm appointed its president and chip division head Cristiano Amon as its new chief executive.

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On January 13, 2021, Qualcomm announced it would acquire NUVIA, a server CPU startup founded in early 2019 by ex-Apple and ex-Google architects, for approximately $1.

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In March 2022, Qualcomm acquired the advanced driver-assistance systems and autonomous driving software brand Arriver from the investment company SSW Partners.

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In June 2022, Qualcomm acquired Israeli startup Cellwize through its investment arm Qualcomm Ventures.

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Qualcomm indicated that its licenses with Arm cover custom-designed processors.

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In mid-1985, Qualcomm was hired by Hughes Aircraft to provide research and testing for a satellite network proposal to the Federal Communications Commission.

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Qualcomm further developed the CDMA techniques for commercial use and submitted them to the Cellular Telephone Industries Association in 1989 as an alternative to the time-division multiple access (TDMA) standard for second-generation cell-phone networks.

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Qualcomm-supported CDMA standards eventually unseated TDMA as the more popular 2G standard in North America, due to its network capacity.

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Qualcomm conducted CDMA test demonstrations in 1989 in San Diego and in 1990 in New York City.

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Qualcomm entered the Russian and Latin American markets in 2005.

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Qualcomm formed licensing agreements with Nokia in Europe, Nortel in Canada, and with Matsushita and Mitsubishi in Japan.

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Qualcomm entered the Chinese market through a partnership with China Unicom in 2000, which launched the first CDMA-based network in China in 2003.

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Qualcomm was forced to expand into manufacturing in the 1990s in order to produce the hardware carriers needed to implement CDMA networks that used Qualcomm's intellectual property.

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In 1994, Qualcomm partnered with Northern Telecom and formed a joint partnership with Sony, in order to leverage their manufacturing expertise.

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Also, in March 1997, after Qualcomm introduced its Q phone, Motorola initiated a lawsuit for allegedly copying the design of its Startac phone.

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In December 1999, Qualcomm sold its manufacturing interests to Kyocera Corporation, a Japanese CDMA manufacturer and Qualcomm licensee.

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Qualcomm responded by refusing to license its intellectual property for the standard.

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Qualcomm agreed to license its CDMA patents for variants such as WCDMA.

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Qualcomm claimed to own 38 percent of WCDMA's essential patents, whereas European GSM interests sponsored a research paper alleging Qualcomm only owned 19 percent.

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Qualcomm consolidated its interests in telecommunications carriers, such as Cricket Communications and Pegaso into a holding company, Leap Wireless, in 1998.

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Qualcomm initially advocated for the CDMA-based Ultra Mobile Broadband standard for fourth generation wireless networks.

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Qualcomm halted development of UMB in 2005 and decided to support the LTE standard, even though it didn't rely as heavily on Qualcomm patents.

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Qualcomm became more focused on using its intellectual property to manufacture semiconductors in a fabless manufacturing model.

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Qualcomm announced it was developing the Scorpion central processing unit for mobile devices in November 2005.

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Qualcomm won a government auction in India in 2010 for $1 billion in spectrum and licenses from which to offer broadband services.

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In 2001, Qualcomm introduced Brew, a smartphone app development service with APIs to access contacts, billing, app-stores, or multimedia on the phone.

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In 2004, Qualcomm created a MediaFLO subsidiary to bring its FLO specification to market.

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Qualcomm built an $800 million MediaFLO network of cell towers to supplement carrier networks with one that is designed for multimedia.

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Qualcomm created the FLO Forum standards group with 15 industry participants in July 2005.

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Qualcomm rebooted the effort in 2013 with LTE Broadcast, which uses pre-existing cell towers to broadcast select content locally on a dedicated spectrum, such as during major sporting events.

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In June 2011, Qualcomm introduced AllJoyn, a wireless standard for communicating between devices like cell phones, televisions, air-conditioners, and refrigerators.

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The subsidiary doubled its employee-count by acquiring HealthyCircles Inc, a healthcare IT company, the following May Qualcomm life was later sold to a private equity firm, Francisco Partners, in 2019.

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In 2016, Qualcomm developed its first beta processor chip for servers and PCs called "Server Development Platform" and sent samples for testing.

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PC Magazine said the release was "historic" for Qualcomm, because it was a new market segment for the company.

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Qualcomm created a Qualcomm Datacenter Technologies subsidiary to focus on the PCs and servers market.

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In 2017, Qualcomm introduced embedded technology for 3D cameras intended for augmented reality apps.

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Qualcomm is developing and demonstrating laptop processors and other parts, as of 2017.

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In 2000, Qualcomm formed a joint venture with Ford called Wingcast, which created telematics equipment for cars, but was unsuccessful and closed down two years later.

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Qualcomm acquired the wireless electric car charging company, HaloIPT, in November 2011 and later sold the company to WiTricity in February 2019.

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Qualcomm started introducing Snapdragon system-on-chips and Gobi modems and other software or semiconductor products for self-driving cars and modern in-car computers.

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In 2020, Qualcomm hired Baidu Veteran, Nan Zhou, to head Qualcomm's push into AI.

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In 2017, Qualcomm owned more than 130, 000 current or pending patents.

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Since many of Qualcomm's patents are part of an industry standard, the company has agreed to license those patents under "fair, reasonable, and non-discriminatory" terms.

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Qualcomm says its patents are more expensive because they are more important and its pricing is within the range of common licensing practices.

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In 2005, Broadcom and Qualcomm were unable to reach an agreement on cross-licensing their intellectual property, and Broadcom sued Qualcomm alleging it was breaching ten Broadcom patents.

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Qualcomm alleged Broadcom was using litigation as a negotiation tactic and that it would respond with its own lawsuits.

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Qualcomm sued Broadcom, alleging it was using seven Qualcomm patents without permission.

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In September 2006, a New Jersey court judge ruled that Qualcomm's patent monopoly was an inherent aspect of creating industry standards and that Qualcomm's pricing practices were lawful.

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In June 2007, the ITC ruled that Qualcomm had infringed on at least one Broadcom patent and banned corresponding imports.

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However, an engineer's testimony led to discovery of 21 JVT-related emails Qualcomm lawyers had withheld from the court, and 200, 000 pages of JVT-related documents.

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Qualcomm's lawyers said the evidence was overlooked by accident, whereas the judge said it was gross misconduct.

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Qualcomm alleged the six companies were colluding together under the code name Project Stockholm in a legal strategy to negotiate lower rates.

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Qualcomm filed a series of patent-infringement lawsuits against Nokia in Europe, Asia, the US, and with the ITC.

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In July 2008, Nokia and Qualcomm reached an out-of-court settlement that ended the dispute and created a 15-year cross-licensing agreement.

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The Securities and Exchange Commission started an investigation into whether Qualcomm breached antibribery laws through its activities in China.

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In late 2018 Qualcomm paid a settlement to Taiwan for $93 million in fines and a promise to spend $700 million in the local Taiwan economy.

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In January 2017, the Federal Trade Commission initiated an investigation into allegations that Qualcomm charged excessive royalties for patents that are "essential to industry standards".

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Apple alleged Qualcomm was engaging in unfair competition by selling industry-standard patents at a discount rate in exchange for an exclusivity agreement for its semiconductor products.

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Qualcomm filed counter-claims alleging Apple made false and misleading statements to induce regulators to sue Qualcomm.

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Qualcomm sued Apple's suppliers for allegedly not paying Qualcomm's patent royalties, after Apple stopped reimbursing them for patent fees.

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Qualcomm petitioned the International Trade Commission to prohibit imports of iPhones, on the premise that they contain stolen Qualcomm patents after Apple's suppliers stopped paying.

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Qualcomm filed suit against Apple in China for alleged patent infringement in October 2017.

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The following month, Apple counter-sued, alleging Qualcomm was using patented Apple technology in its Android components.

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In June 2022, Qualcomm announced the company had won its appeal against $1+ billion European Union antitrust fine.

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Qualcomm appealed to the Ninth Circuit, which reversed the decision in August 2020.

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Qualcomm develops software, semiconductor designs, patented intellectual property, development tools and services, but does not manufacture physical products like phones or infrastructure equipment.

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Qualcomm's revenues are derived from licensing fees for use of its intellectual property, sales of semiconductor products that are based on its designs, and from other wireless hardware, software or services.

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Qualcomm is a predominantly fabless provider of semiconductor products for wireless communications and data transfer in portable devices.

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Qualcomm provides licenses to use its patents, many of which are critical to the CDMA2000, TD-SCDMA and WCDMA wireless standards.

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