China’s National Development and Reform Commission apparently has “substantial evidence” against Qualcomm, which is accused of engaging in price fixing in the country. Xu Kunlin, head of the antitrust regulator, hasn’t revealed any details (except mentioning that evidence), leaving us waiting for the procedure.
Meanwhile, the chip maker confirmed that the investigation is under way, adding that it is not aware of any violations. The company also promised to cooperate with investigators.
It’s unclear what kind of consequences Qualcomm could face if found guilty. The chances are it wants to comply with all the laws of the country, which is already the world’s largest smartphone market. At the same time, local chip makers plus Taiwan’s MediaTek would love to see Qualcomm suffering and get a portion of its business in return.
As far as I can tell, we could be looking at the beginning of what could be an epic lawsuit that could redefine “power” in the mobile industry. More details as we get ’em…