Qualcomm, maker of Snapdragon computer chips for mobile devices such as smartphones, will share software date with South Korean companies that will allow them to develop their own software for the chips. According to a Monday Business Week report with information from South Korea’s antitrust regulator, the Fair Trade Commission, the information will be shared in the next two to 10 months.
To date, Qualcomm had a monopoly, making customers buy its own software for phones equipped with the chips. The move may let companies such as LG and Samsung write their own low-level code for the Snapdragon and other cellular chips used in some smartphones, such as some of LG‘s Android phones and the Samsung Focus.
The decision was prompted by a fine of $236 million in 2009 for charging higher royalties to makers that used chips other than Qualcomm’s when licensing its CDMA technology. Qualcomm appealed the decision but agreed to share the software information.