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Qualcomm, Broadcom reach $891 million settlement

Qualcomm will pay Broadcom $891 million, ending patent litigation between the companies worldwide.

Qualcomm and Broadcom announced Sunday that they have agreed to end patent litigation between the companies worldwide, with Qualcomm paying Broadcom $891 million, according to the announcement.

On Wednesday, Qualcomm delayed its second-quarter earnings statement, citing advanced settlement discussions with Broadcom.

Qualcomm made this statement Sunday: "Qualcomm and Broadcom today announced that they have entered into a settlement and multi-year patent agreement. The agreement will result in the dismissal with prejudice of all litigation between the companies, including all patent infringement claims in the International Trade Commission and U.S. District Court in Santa Ana, as well as the withdrawal by Broadcom of its complaints to the European Commission and the Korea Fair Trade Commission."

Qualcomm will pay Broadcom $891 million over a four-year period, according to the San Diego-based company. The terms of the agreement will not result in any change to Qualcomm's 3G (CDMA2000, WCDMA, and TD-SCDMA technologies) and 4G (LTE and WiMAX technologies) licensing revenue model, Qualcomm said.

The agreement stipulates, among other things, that Broadcom and Qualcomm agree not to assert patents against each other for their respective integrated circuit products and certain other products and services and Broadcom agrees not to assert its patents against Qualcomm's customers for Qualcomm's integrated circuit products incorporated into cellular products.

"We believe that this resolution is positive for both Qualcomm and Broadcom, our customers, our partners and the overall industry," Paul E. Jacobs, chairman and CEO of Qualcomm, and Scott A. McGregor, president and CEO of Broadcom, said in a joint statement.

"The settlement will allow us to direct our full attention and resources to continuing to innovate, improving our competitive position in this economic downturn, and growing demand for wireless products and services," Jacobs said.

The agreement ends longstanding litigation between the companies. For its part, Broadcom had argued in one case that Qualcomm was unfairly limiting competition by putting onerous conditions in its patent licensing agreements. Qualcomm licensed its chipset patents to other chip suppliers with the stipulation that they must limit sales of their products to mobile handset makers that also have Qualcomm patent licenses.

Broadcom had also asserted that the cloud of litigation hanging over it was a sticking point for prospective customers--and did win a judgment against Qualcomm in 2007. Qualcomm, however, had won court rulings of its own, having suits against it dismissed.