A Chinese court has banned the sale and import of iPhones following an injunction filed by chipmaker Qualcomm against Apple for use of a software that the former claims was patented.
The ban is only applicable to models ranging from iPhone 6s to the iPhone X – those that run on Apple’s older version of operating system. Newer models such as iPhone XS and iPhone XS Plus can be still sold in the country.
Apple, however, has said that all models remain in sale in China.
Both Qualcomm and Apple have been locked in a legal battle over intellectual property and have filed various lawsuits against each other across the world. The latest ruling deemed that Apple violated two of Qualcomm’s patents – one where photographs are edited and resized on the phone and other on how apps can be managed on a touch screen.
"Apple continues to benefit from our intellectual property while refusing to compensate us," Don Rosenberg, general counsel of Qualcomm was reported as saying.
The iPhone-maker said that it will pursue all legal options through courts and called the ban "another desperate move by a company whose illegal practices are under investigation by regulators around the world".
The ruling comes as both China and the US have called a temporary truce in their trade war where both have decided to not proceed with any more tariffs.
However, recent development like Chinese telecommunication giant Huawei’s CFO Meng Wanzhou’s arrest in Canada at the request of the US has further strained relations between the two countries, leaving analysts doubtful of the impact of the truce.
It is unclear whether the decision to ban certain models of iPhones might impact the truce since Apple can appeal the statement.