Even though HTC said that their patent settlement with Apple wouldn’t have any sort of impact on the financial areas of the company, analyst Shaw Wu says that the Taiwan-based company might end up paying up to $6-8 per device in licensing fees starting in 2013. These fees would be put towards both Android and Windows Phone devices, and it could eventually amount to between $180 and $280 million in licensing fees. That’s not a whole lot of money for Apple, but it is a whole lot more than what HTC was leading people to believe. In fact, its a surprise that HTC has agreed to do this with their terrible Q3 results along with the company expecting to have even worse results in Q4. These licensing fees are a result of a 10-year peace treaty between HTC and Apple concerning their many battles over patent infringements.
As you know, Apple hasn’t been doing that great when it comes to their patent battles against Samsung as of late, so it will be understandable as to why the Cupertino-based company would be will to settle with a manufacturer that isn’t in as much as a power position as Samsung has been. We know that HTC has been hurting as company for quite a while, and if these licensing fees for the company turn out to be true, this isn’t going to be very good for their balance sheet. When HTC said that things were looking worse for Q4, could these licensing fees be what they were talking about? Whatever the case, I don’t think this is good for HTC at all. Then again, it is a lot better than losing a patent infringement battle with Apple. I’m sure HTC would be happy to avoid a $1 billion fee in the courtroom, especially with the shape they are in.
All that aside, we should keep in mind that analysts often say some of the most crazy things. That said, this $6 – $8 estimate could be an analysts imagination going in overdrive again. At the same time, it could very well be true, especially after looking back at what Apple wanted to charge Samsung in licensing fees for their tablets. Of course, there could also be a chance that Apple and HTC decided to just resolve the patent complaints and differences without money involved. If that were true, they would have probably had to agree on some sort of cross-licensing deal.
Then again, Apple is always trying to make more money. Whether it means suing a Polish deli or one of the largest tech giant’s in the world, they will always be there with an invoice. Actually, that can stand for just about every major company in the industry.
Do you think that HTC and Apple could have settled on a cross-licensing deal? Is it possible that the figures the analyst threw out could be accurate? I sincerely hope money isn’t involved here, HTC really needs to rise from the financial dump they are already in.
Sound off in the comments below!
source: Android Central