Imagination Technologies launched action against Apple after it was unable to come to an agreement with the smartphone manufacturer on the terms of a contract termination.

UK-based Imagination, which makes Graphics Processor Units (GPUs) used in the iPhone, said it initiated a dispute resolution procedure after it was unable to make “satisfactory progress” in reaching an agreement on a licensing and royalty deal.

The action follows Apple’s notification on 3 April it would stop using the company’s technology within the next 15 months to 24 months in favour of developing in-house GPUs.

At the time Imagination released a statement saying it would be “extremely challenging” for Apple to design a new architecture without infringing its IP, patents and confidential information.

In a new statement, released as part of Imagination’s Q1 financial update, the company said: “Imagination has been unable to make satisfactory progress with Apple to-date regarding alternative commercial arrangements for the current licence and royalty agreement.”

“Imagination has therefore commenced the dispute resolution procedure under the licence agreement with a view to reaching an agreement through a more structured process.”

The company added it: “reserved all its rights in respect of Apple’s unauthorised use of Imagination’s confidential information and Imagination’s intellectual property rights.”

Supplier problems
The row comes as the iPhone manufacturer is embroiled in legal action against another supplier, Qualcomm.

Apple is currently withholding payments to some of its manufacturers, which Qualcomm say is money owed to it as royalties.

In early April, Qualcomm accused Apple of launching a “global attack” on its business, while Apple said the chipset company was trying to charge royalites on technologies it had nothing to do with.