Significant Accounting Policies
|12 Months Ended|
Sep. 29, 2019
|Accounting Policies [Abstract]|
|Significant Accounting Policies||
Note 1. Significant Accounting Policies
We develop, design, manufacture, have manufactured on our behalf and market digital communications products, which principally consist of integrated circuits and system software based on CDMA (Code Division Multiple Access), OFDMA (Orthogonal Frequency Division Multiple Access) and other technologies for use in mobile devices, wireless networks, broadband gateway equipment, consumer electronic devices, devices used in IoT and automotive telematics and infotainment systems. We also grant licenses to use portions of our intellectual property portfolio, which includes certain patent rights essential to and/or useful in the manufacture and sale of certain wireless products, and receive ongoing royalties based on sales by licensees of wireless products incorporating our patented technologies and may also receive fixed license fees (payable in one or more installments).
Principles of Consolidation. The consolidated financial statements include the assets, liabilities and operating results of Qualcomm and its subsidiaries, including our subsidiary RF360 Holdings Singapore Pte. Ltd (RF360 Holdings) since its formation in fiscal 2017 (Note 9). During the third quarter of fiscal 2018, we eliminated the one-month reporting lag previously used to consolidate RF360 Holdings to provide contemporaneous reporting within our consolidated financial statements. The effect of this change was not material to the consolidated financial statements, and therefore, the impact of eliminating the one-month reporting lag was included in our results of operations for fiscal 2018. Intercompany transactions and balances have been eliminated.
Financial Statement Preparation. The preparation of financial statements in conformity with accounting principles generally accepted in the United States of America (GAAP) requires management to make estimates and assumptions that affect the reported amounts and the disclosure of contingent amounts in our consolidated financial statements and the accompanying notes. Examples of our significant accounting estimates that may involve a higher degree of judgment and complexity than others include: the estimation of sales-based royalty revenues; the impairment of other investments; the valuation of inventories; the valuation of the recoverability of goodwill and other indefinite-lived and long-lived assets; the recognition, measurement and disclosure of loss contingencies related to legal and regulatory proceedings; and the calculation of our income tax provision, including the recognition and measurement of uncertain tax positions. Actual results could differ from those estimates. Certain prior year amounts have been reclassified to conform to the current year presentation.
Revision of Prior Period Financial Statements. In connection with the preparation of our consolidated financial statements, we identified an immaterial error related to the recognition of certain royalty revenues of our QTL (Qualcomm Technology Licensing) segment in the quarterly and annual periods in fiscal 2018 and third and fourth quarters and annual period in fiscal 2017. In accordance with SAB No. 99, “Materiality,” and SAB No. 108, “Considering the Effects of Prior Year Misstatements when Quantifying Misstatements in Current Year Financial Statements,” we evaluated the error and determined that the related impact was not material to our financial statements for any prior annual or interim period, but that correcting the cumulative impact of the error would be significant to our results of operations for the three months ended December 30, 2018. Accordingly, we have revised previously reported financial information for such immaterial error, as previously disclosed in our Quarterly Report on Form 10-Q for the first, second and third quarters of fiscal 2019. A summary of revisions to certain previously reported financial information presented herein for comparative purposes is included in Note 12.
Fiscal Year. We operate and report using a 52-53 week fiscal year ending on the last Sunday in September. The fiscal year ended September 29, 2019 and September 24, 2017 each included 52 weeks. The fiscal years ended September 30, 2018 included 53 weeks.
Recently Adopted Accounting Pronouncements.
Revenue Recognition: In May 2014, the Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB) issued new accounting guidance related to revenue recognition (ASC 606), which outlines a comprehensive revenue recognition model and supersedes most current revenue recognition accounting guidance and requires increased disclosures. The new accounting guidance defines a five-step approach that requires a company to recognize revenue as control of goods or services transfers to a customer at an amount that reflects the expected consideration to be received in exchange for those goods or services. We adopted ASC 606 in the first quarter of fiscal 2019 using the modified retrospective transition method only to those contracts that were not completed as of October 1, 2018. We recognized the cumulative effect of initially applying the new revenue accounting guidance as an adjustment to opening retained earnings. Prior period results have not been restated and continue to be reported in accordance with the accounting guidance in effect for those periods (ASC 605). We have implemented new accounting policies, systems, processes and internal controls necessary to support the requirements of ASC 606.
Adoption of this new accounting guidance most significantly impacts the timing of sales-based royalty revenues, which are the vast majority of our QTL segment’s revenues. Prior to adoption, we recognized sales-based royalties as revenues in the period in which such royalties were reported by licensees, which was after the conclusion of the quarter in which the licensees’ sales occurred and when all other revenue recognition criteria had been met. Under the new accounting guidance, we estimate and recognize sales-based royalties in the period in which the associated sales occur, subject to certain constraints on our ability to estimate such amounts, resulting in an acceleration of revenue recognition compared to the historical method under ASC 605. Since we do not invoice for sales-based royalties estimated and recognized in any given quarter until after the conclusion of that quarter (which is generally the following quarter when such royalties are reported by licensees), revenues recognized from sales-based royalties results in unbilled receivables (included in accounts receivable, net on the consolidated balance sheet). The adoption of ASC 606 did not otherwise have a material impact.
The new accounting guidance also impacts the timing of recognizing certain customer incentives, which are recorded as a reduction to revenues in the period that the related revenues are earned. Prior to adoption, we accounted for certain customer incentive arrangements, including volume-related and other pricing rebates or cost reimbursements for marketing and other activities involving certain of our products and technologies, in part based on the maximum potential liability. Under the new accounting guidance, we estimate the amount of all customer incentives.
The following table summarizes the cumulative effects of adopting the new revenue accounting guidance (substantially all of which related to the impact to QTL’s sales-based royalties) on our consolidated balance sheet at October 1, 2018 (in millions):
The following tables summarize the impacts of adopting the new revenue accounting guidance on our consolidated balance sheet and statement of operations (in millions):
Adoption of the new accounting guidance had no impact to net cash provided (used) by operating, financing or investing activities on our consolidated statement of cash flows for fiscal 2019.
Financial Assets: In January 2016, the FASB issued new accounting guidance on classifying and measuring financial instruments, which requires that all equity investments, other than equity-method investments, in unconsolidated entities generally be measured at fair value through earnings in the statement of operations. Additionally, it changes the disclosure requirements for financial instruments. We adopted the new accounting guidance in the first quarter of fiscal 2019 using the modified retrospective transition method for investments in marketable securities, which have readily determinable fair values, with the cumulative effect of applying the new accounting guidance recognized as an adjustment to opening retained earnings. Upon adoption, we reclassified $50 million of unrealized gains, net of the associated tax effects, related to our investments in marketable securities from accumulated other comprehensive income to opening retained earnings. We have applied the prospective transition method for investments in non-marketable securities, which are investments in privately held companies that do not have readily determinable fair values and will recognize, through earnings, any unrealized gains that have accumulated in the period in which there is an observable transaction, if any.
Prior to the adoption of the new accounting guidance in the first quarter of fiscal 2019, investments in marketable equity securities were generally classified as available-for-sale equity investments, with net unrealized gains or losses recorded as a component of accumulated other comprehensive income, net of income taxes. Beginning in fiscal 2019, all gains and losses on investments in marketable equity securities, realized and unrealized, are recognized in investment and other income, net.
Prior to the adoption of the new accounting guidance in the first quarter of fiscal 2019, investments in non-marketable equity securities were recorded at cost less impairment, if any, with any losses resulting from an impairment recognized in investment and other income, net. Beginning in fiscal 2019, investments in non-marketable equity securities are recorded at
cost, less impairments, adjusted for observable price changes in orderly transactions for identical or similar securities. All gains and losses on investments in non-marketable equity securities, realized and unrealized, are recognized in investment and other income, net.
In addition, prior to adoption, we recorded impairment losses in earnings on investments in non-marketable equity securities when an impairment was considered other than temporary. Beginning in fiscal 2019, we record impairment losses in earnings when we believe an investment has experienced a decline in value.
Hedge Instruments: In August 2017, the FASB issued new accounting guidance that expands and refines hedge accounting for both financial and non-financial risks, aligns the recognition and presentation of the effects of hedging instruments and hedged items in the financial statements, and includes targeted improvements related to the assessment of hedge effectiveness. The new accounting guidance also modifies disclosure requirements for hedging activities. We adopted the new accounting guidance in the first quarter of 2019 using the modified retrospective transition method and recorded a negligible adjustment to opening retained earnings. The new accounting guidance did not have a material impact on our consolidated financial statements.
Statement of Cash Flows: In August 2016, the FASB issued new accounting guidance related to the classification of certain cash receipts and cash payments in the statement of cash flows. We adopted the new accounting guidance in the first quarter of fiscal 2019 using the retrospective transition method for each period presented, which did not have a material impact on our consolidated statements of cash flows.
In November 2016, the FASB issued new accounting guidance that requires companies to include restricted cash and cash equivalents as a component in total cash and cash equivalents on the statement of cash flows. As a result, the consolidated statement of cash flows no longer reflects transfers between cash and cash equivalents and restricted cash and cash equivalents. We adopted the new accounting guidance in the first quarter of fiscal 2019 using the retrospective transition method, which resulted in certain amounts in fiscal 2017 and 2018 being adjusted to conform to the new accounting guidance. In fiscal 2017, $2.0 billion was designated as collateral for outstanding letters of credit in connection with the then proposed acquisition of NXP Semiconductors N.V. (NXP). During fiscal 2017, $1.3 billion of the amount held as collateral was invested in time deposits that were not considered cash equivalents, which subsequently matured. This resulted in an adjustment to investing activities for fiscal 2017 to reflect the $1.3 billion purchase and subsequent maturity of time deposits and a $2.0 billion reduction in investing activities to reflect removal of the activity of restricted cash and cash equivalents. In fiscal 2018, such restricted cash and cash equivalents were released from restriction, which resulted in a decrease in investing activities by such amount.
Income Taxes: In October 2016, the FASB issued new accounting guidance that changes the accounting for the income tax effects of intra-entity transfers of assets other than inventory. Under the new accounting guidance, the selling (transferring) entity is required to recognize a current tax expense or benefit upon transfer of the asset. Similarly, the purchasing (receiving) entity is required to recognize a deferred tax asset or deferred tax liability, as well as the related deferred tax benefit or expense, upon receipt of the asset. We adopted the new accounting guidance in the first quarter of fiscal 2019 using the modified retrospective transition method, with the cumulative effect of applying the new accounting guidance recognized as an adjustment to opening retained earnings of $2.6 billion, primarily as the result of establishing a deferred tax asset on the basis difference of certain intellectual property distributed from one of our foreign subsidiaries to a subsidiary in the United States in fiscal 2018. During fiscal 2019, the United States Treasury Department issued new temporary regulations that resulted in a change to the deductibility of dividend income received by a U.S. stockholder from a foreign corporation. As a result of this change, pursuant to an agreement with the Internal Revenue Service, we relinquished the federal tax basis step-up in such distributed intellectual property. Therefore, the related deferred tax asset was derecognized, resulting in a $2.5 billion charge to income tax expense in fiscal 2019 (Note 3). The ongoing impact of this accounting guidance will be dependent on the facts and circumstances of any transactions within its scope.
Cash Equivalents. We consider all highly liquid investments with original maturities of 90 days or less to be cash equivalents. Cash equivalents are comprised of money market funds, certificates of deposit, commercial paper, corporate bonds and notes, certain bank time and demand deposits and government agencies’ securities. The carrying amounts approximate fair value due to the short maturities of these instruments.
Marketable Securities. Marketable securities include marketable equity securities and available-for-sale debt securities for which classification is determined at the time of purchase and reevaluated at each balance sheet date. We classify marketable securities as current or noncurrent based on the nature of the securities and their availability for use in current operations. Marketable securities are stated at fair value with all realized and unrealized gains and losses on investments in marketable equity securities and realized gains and losses on available-for-sale debt securities recognized in investment and
other income, net. Net unrealized gains or losses on available-for-sale debt securities are recorded as a component of accumulated other comprehensive income, net of income taxes. The realized gains and losses on marketable securities are determined using the specific identification method.
At each balance sheet date, we assess available-for-sale debt securities in an unrealized loss position to determine whether the unrealized loss is other than temporary. We consider factors including: the significance of the decline in value as compared to the cost basis; underlying factors contributing to a decline in the prices of securities in a single asset class; how long the market value of the security has been less than its cost basis; the security’s relative performance versus its peers, sector or asset class; the market and economy in general; views of external investment managers; news or financial information that has been released specific to the investee; and the outlook for the overall industry in which the investee operates.
If a debt security’s market value is below amortized cost and we either intend to sell the security or it is more likely than not that we will be required to sell the security before its anticipated recovery, we record an other-than-temporary impairment charge to investment and other income, net for the entire amount of the impairment. For the remaining debt securities, if an other-than-temporary impairment exists, we separate the other-than-temporary impairment into the portion of the loss related to credit factors, or the credit loss portion, which is recorded as a charge to investment and other income, net, and the portion of the loss that is not related to credit factors, or the noncredit loss portion, which is recorded as a component of other accumulated comprehensive income, net of income taxes.
Equity Method and Non-marketable Equity Investments. Equity investments for which we have significant influence, but not control over the investee and are not the primary beneficiary of the investee’s activities, are accounted for under the equity method. Our share of gains and losses in equity method investments are recorded in investment and other income, net. Non-marketable equity investments (for which we do not have significant influence or control) are investments without readily determinable fair values that are recorded based on initial cost minus impairment, if any, plus or minus adjustments resulting from observable price changes in orderly transactions for identical or similar securities. All gains and losses on investments in non-marketable equity securities, realized and unrealized, are recognized in investment and other income, net. We monitor equity method investments and non-marketable equity securities for events or circumstances that could indicate the investments are impaired, such as a deterioration in the investee’s financial condition and business forecasts and lower valuations in recently completed or anticipated financings, and recognize a charge to investment and other income, net for the difference between the estimated fair value and the carrying value. For equity method investments, we record impairment losses in earnings only when impairments are considered other-than-temporary.
Derivatives. Our primary objectives for holding derivative instruments are to manage interest rate risk on our long-term debt and to manage foreign exchange risk for certain foreign currency revenues, operating expenses, receivables and payables. Derivative instruments are recorded at fair value and included in other current or noncurrent assets or other current or noncurrent liabilities based on their maturity dates. Counterparties to our derivative instruments are all major banking institutions.
Interest Rate Swaps: We manage our exposure to certain interest rate risks related to our long-term debt through the use of interest rate swaps. Such swaps allow us to effectively convert fixed-rate payments into floating-rate payments based on LIBOR. These transactions are designated as fair value hedges, and the gains and losses related to changes in the fair value of the interest rate swaps substantially offset changes in the fair value of the hedged portion of the underlying debt that are attributable to changes in the market interest rates. The net gains and losses on the interest rate swaps, as well as the offsetting gains or losses on the related fixed-rate debt attributable to the hedged risks, are recognized in earnings as interest expense in the current period. The interest settlement payments associated with the interest rate swap agreements are classified as cash flows from operating activities in the consolidated statements of cash flows.
At September 29, 2019 and September 30, 2018, the aggregate fair value of our interest rate swaps related to our long-term debt issued in May 2015 was negligible and $50 million, respectively. The fair values of the swaps were recorded in other current liabilities and other noncurrent assets at September 29, 2019 and in other noncurrent liabilities at September 30, 2018. At September 29, 2019 and September 30, 2018, the swaps had an aggregate notional amount of $1.8 billion, which effectively converted approximately 43% and 50% of the fixed-rate debt due in 2020 and 2022, respectively, into floating-rate debt, with maturities matching our fixed-rate debt due in 2020 and 2022.
Foreign Currency Hedges: We manage our exposure to foreign exchange market risks, when deemed appropriate, through the use of derivative instruments, including foreign currency forward and option contracts with financial counterparties, that may or may not be designated as hedging instruments. These derivative instruments have maturity dates of less than twelve months. Gains and losses arising from such contracts that are designated as cash flow hedging instruments
are recorded as a component of accumulated other comprehensive income as gains and losses on derivative instruments, net of income taxes. The hedging gains and losses in accumulated other comprehensive income are subsequently reclassified to revenues or costs and expenses, as applicable, in the consolidated statements of operations in the same period in which the underlying transactions affect our earnings. The cash flows associated with derivative instruments designated as cash flow hedging instruments are classified as cash flows from operating activities in the consolidated statements of cash flows, which is the same category as the hedged transaction. The fair values of our foreign currency forward and option contracts used to hedge foreign currency risk designated as cash flow hedges recorded in total assets were negligible at September 29, 2019. The fair values of our foreign currency forward and option contracts used to hedge foreign currency risk designated as cash flow hedges recorded in total assets and in total liabilities were negligible and $19 million, respectively, at September 30, 2018.
For foreign currency forward and option contracts not designated as hedging instruments, the changes in fair value are recorded in investment and other income, net in the period of change. The cash flows associated with derivative instruments not designated as hedging instruments are classified as cash flows from operating activities in the consolidated statements of cash flows, which is the same category as the hedged transaction. The fair values of our foreign currency forward and option contracts not designated as hedging instruments were negligible at September 29, 2019 and September 30, 2018.
Gross Notional Amounts: The gross notional amounts of our interest rate and foreign currency derivatives by instrument type were as follows (in millions):
The gross notional amounts of our derivatives by currency were as follows (in millions):
Other Hedging Activities. We have designated $1.4 billion of foreign currency-denominated liabilities related to the fines imposed by the European Commission (Note 7) as hedges of our net investment in certain foreign subsidiaries as of September 29, 2019. Gains and losses arising from the portion of these balances that are designated as net investment hedges are recorded in accumulated other comprehensive income as a component of the foreign currency translation adjustment.
Fair Value Measurements. Fair value is defined as the exchange price that would be received for an asset or paid to transfer a liability (an exit price) in the principal or most advantageous market for the asset or liability in an orderly transaction between market participants as of the measurement date. Applicable accounting guidance provides an established hierarchy for inputs used in measuring fair value that maximizes the use of observable inputs and minimizes the use of unobservable inputs by requiring that the most observable inputs be used when available. Observable inputs are inputs that market participants would use in valuing the asset or liability and are developed based on market data obtained from sources independent of us. Unobservable inputs are inputs that reflect our assumptions about the factors that market participants would use in valuing the asset or liability. There are three levels of inputs that may be used to measure fair value:
Assets and liabilities measured at fair value are classified based on the lowest level of input that is significant to the fair value measurement. We review the fair value hierarchy classification on a quarterly basis. Changes in the observability of valuation inputs may result in a reclassification of levels for certain securities within the fair value hierarchy. We recognize transfers into and out of levels within the fair value hierarchy at the end of the fiscal month in which the actual event or change in circumstances that caused the transfer to occur.
Cash Equivalents and Marketable Securities: With the exception of auction rate securities, we obtain pricing information from quoted market prices, pricing vendors or quotes from brokers/dealers. We conduct reviews of our primary pricing vendors to determine whether the inputs used in the vendor’s pricing processes are deemed to be observable. The fair value for interest-bearing securities includes accrued interest.
The fair value of corporate bonds and notes and common and preferred stock is generally determined using standard observable inputs, including reported trades, quoted market prices, matrix pricing, benchmark yields, broker/dealer quotes, issuer spreads, two-sided markets and/or benchmark securities.
The fair value of auction rate securities is estimated using a discounted cash flow model that incorporates transaction details, such as contractual terms, maturity and timing and amount of future cash flows, as well as assumptions related to liquidity, default likelihood and recovery, the future state of the auction rate market and credit valuation adjustments of market participants. Though most of the securities we hold are pools of student loans guaranteed by the United States government, prepayment speeds and illiquidity discounts are considered significant unobservable inputs. These additional inputs are generally unobservable, and therefore, auction rate securities are included in Level 3.
Derivative Instruments: Derivative instruments that are traded on an exchange are valued using quoted market prices and are included in Level 1. Derivative instruments that are not traded on an exchange are valued using conventional calculations/models that are primarily based on observable inputs, such as foreign currency exchange rates, volatilities and interest rates, and therefore, such derivative instruments are included in Level 2.
Other Investments and Other Liabilities: Other investments and other liabilities included in Level 1 are comprised of our deferred compensation plan liabilities and related assets, which consist of mutual funds and are included in other assets. Other investments and other liabilities included in Level 3 are comprised of convertible debt instruments issued by private companies and contingent consideration related to business combinations, respectively. The fair value of convertible debt instruments is estimated based on the estimated timing and amount of future cash flows, as well as assumptions related to liquidity, default likelihood and recovery. The fair value of contingent consideration related to business combinations is primarily estimated using either a real options or discounted cash flow model, which includes inputs, such as projected financial information, market volatility, discount rates and timing of contractual payments. The inputs we use to estimate the fair values of the convertible debt instruments and contingent consideration are generally unobservable, and therefore, they are included in Level 3.
Allowances for Doubtful Accounts. We maintain allowances for doubtful accounts for estimated losses resulting from receivables that will not be collected. We determine the allowance based on customer credit-worthiness, historical payment experience, the age of outstanding receivables and collateral, to the extent applicable.
Inventories. Inventories are valued at the lower of cost and net realizable value using the first-in, first-out method. Recoverability of inventories is assessed based on review of future customer demand that considers multiple factors, including committed purchase orders from customers as well as purchase commitment projections provided by customers and our own forecast of customer demand, among other things.
Property, Plant and Equipment. Property, plant and equipment are recorded at cost and depreciated or amortized using the straight-line method over their estimated useful lives. Upon the retirement or disposition of property, plant and equipment, the related cost and accumulated depreciation or amortization are removed, and a gain or loss is recorded, when appropriate. Buildings on owned land are depreciated over 30 years, and building improvements are depreciated over 15 years. Leasehold improvements and buildings on leased land are amortized over the shorter of their estimated useful lives, not to exceed 15 years and 30 years, respectively, or the remaining term of the related lease. Other property, plant and equipment have useful lives ranging from 2 to 25 years. Leased property meeting certain capital lease criteria is capitalized, and the net present value of the related lease payments is recorded as a liability. Amortization of assets under capital leases is recorded using the straight-line method over the shorter of the estimated useful lives or the lease terms. Maintenance, repairs and minor renewals or betterments are charged to expense as incurred.
Goodwill and Other Intangible Assets. Goodwill represents the excess of purchase price over the value assigned to the net tangible and identifiable intangible assets of businesses acquired. Acquired intangible assets other than goodwill are amortized over their useful lives unless the lives are determined to be indefinite. For intangible assets purchased in a business combination, the estimated fair values of the assets received are used to establish their recorded values. For intangible assets acquired in a non-monetary exchange, the estimated fair values of the assets transferred (or the estimated fair values of the assets received, if more clearly evident) are used to establish their recorded values, unless the values of neither the assets received nor the assets transferred are determinable within reasonable limits, in which case the assets received are measured based on the carrying values of the assets transferred. Valuation techniques consistent with the market approach, income approach and/or cost approach are used to measure fair value.
Impairment of Goodwill, Other Indefinite-Lived Assets and Long-Lived Assets. Goodwill and other indefinite-lived intangible assets are tested annually for impairment in the fourth fiscal quarter and in interim periods if events or changes in circumstances indicate that the assets may be impaired. If a qualitative assessment is used and we determine that the fair value of a reporting unit or indefinite-lived intangible asset is more likely than not (i.e., a likelihood of more than 50%) less than its carrying amount, a quantitative impairment test will be performed. If goodwill is quantitatively assessed for impairment and a reporting unit’s carrying value exceeds its fair value, the difference is recorded as an impairment. Other indefinite-lived intangible assets are quantitatively assessed for impairment, if necessary, by comparing their estimated fair values to their carrying values. If the carrying value exceeds the fair value, the difference is recorded as an impairment.
Long-lived assets, such as property, plant and equipment and intangible assets subject to amortization, are reviewed for impairment when there is evidence that events or changes in circumstances indicate that the carrying amount of an asset or asset group may not be recoverable. Recoverability of assets to be held and used is measured by comparing the carrying amount of an asset or asset group to estimated undiscounted future cash flows expected to be generated by the asset or asset group. If the carrying amount of an asset or asset group exceeds its estimated future cash flows, an impairment charge is recognized for the amount by which the carrying amount of the asset or asset group exceeds the estimated fair value of the asset or asset group. Long-lived assets to be disposed of by sale are reported at the lower of their carrying amounts or their estimated fair values less costs to sell and are not depreciated.
Revenue Recognition. As a result of the adoption of ASC 606, we revised our revenue recognition policy beginning in fiscal 2019 as follows.
We derive revenues principally from sales of integrated circuit products and licensing of our intellectual property. We also generate revenues from licensing system software and by performing development and other services and from other product sales. The timing of revenue recognition and the amount of revenue actually recognized in each case depends upon a variety of factors, including the specific terms of each arrangement and the nature of our performance obligations.
Revenues from sales of our products are recognized upon transfer of control to the customer, which is generally at the time of shipment. Revenues from providing services are typically recognized over time as our performance obligation is satisfied. Revenues from providing services and licensing system software were each less than 5% of total revenues for all periods presented.
We grant licenses or otherwise provide rights to use portions of our intellectual property portfolio, which, among other rights, includes certain patent rights essential to and/or useful in the manufacture, sale or use of certain wireless products. Licensees pay royalties based on their sales of products incorporating or using our licensed intellectual property and may also pay a fixed license fee in one or more installments. Sales-based royalties are generally based upon a percentage of the wholesale (i.e., licensee’s) selling price of complete licensed products, net of certain permissible deductions (including transportation, insurance, packing costs and other items). We broadly provide per unit royalty caps that apply to certain categories of complete wireless devices, namely smartphones, tablets, laptops and smartwatches, and provide for a maximum royalty amount payable per device. We estimate and recognize sales-based royalties on such licensed products in the period in which the associated sales occur, subject to certain constraints on our ability to estimate such royalties. Our estimates of sales-based royalties are based largely on an assessment of the volume of devices supplied into the market that incorporate or use our licensed intellectual property. We estimate sales-based royalties taking into consideration the mix of such sales on a licensee-by-licensee basis, as well as the licensees’ average wholesale prices of such products, and consider all information (historical, current and forecasted, which may include certain estimates from licensees) that is reasonably available to us. We also consider in our estimates of sales-based royalties any changes in pricing we plan or expect to make. Our licensees, however, do not report and pay royalties owed for sales in any given quarter until after the conclusion of that quarter, which is generally the following quarter. As a result of recognizing revenues in the period in which the licensees’ sales occur using
estimates, adjustments to revenues are required in subsequent periods to reflect changes in estimates as new information becomes available, primarily resulting from actual amounts reported by our licensees.
License agreements that require payment of license fees contain a single performance obligation that represents ongoing access to a portfolio of intellectual property over the license term since such agreements provide the licensee the right to access a portfolio of intellectual property that exists at inception of the license agreement and to updates and new intellectual property that is added to the licensed portfolio during the term of the agreement that are highly interdependent or interrelated. Since we expect to expend efforts to develop and transfer updates to our licensed portfolio on an even basis, license fees are recognized as revenues on a straight-line basis over the estimated period of benefit of the license to the licensee.
We account for a contract with a customer/licensee when it is legally enforceable, the parties are committed to perform their respective obligations, the rights of the parties regarding the goods and/or services to be transferred are identified, payment terms are identified, the contract has commercial substance and collectability of substantially all of the consideration is probable. If all such conditions are not met, revenues and any associated receivables are generally not recognized until such time that the required conditions are met. Cash collected from customers prior to a contract existing is recorded to other customer-related liabilities in other current liabilities.
From time to time, regulatory authorities investigate our business practices, particularly with respect to our licensing business, and institute proceedings against us. Depending on the matter, various remedies that could result from an unfavorable resolution include, among others, the loss of our ability to enforce one or more of our patents; injunctions; monetary damages or fines or other orders to pay money; the issuance of orders to cease certain conduct or modify our business practices, such as requiring us to reduce our royalty rates, reduce the base on which our royalties are calculated, grant patent licenses to chipset manufacturers, sell chipsets to unlicensed original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) or modify or renegotiate some or all of our existing license agreements; and determinations that some or all of our license agreements are invalid or unenforceable. Additionally, from time to time, companies initiate various strategies in an attempt to negotiate, renegotiate, reduce and/or eliminate their need to pay royalties to us for the use of our intellectual property, which may include disputing, underreporting, underpaying, not reporting and/or not paying royalties owed to us under their license agreements with us, or reporting to us in a manner that is not in compliance with their contractual obligations. In such cases, we estimate and recognize licensing revenues only when we have a contract, as defined in the revenue recognition guidance, and to the extent it is probable that a significant reversal of cumulative revenues recognized will not occur, both of which may require significant judgment. We analyze the risk of a significant revenue reversal considering both the likelihood and magnitude of the reversal and, if necessary, constrain the amount of estimated revenues recognized in order to mitigate this risk, which may result in recognizing revenues less than amounts contractually owed to us.
In May 2019, in United States Federal Trade Commission (FTC) v. QUALCOMM Incorporated, the court issued an Order ruling against us and imposing certain injunctive relief (Note 7). In August 2019, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit granted in its entirety Qualcomm’s request for a partial stay of the injunction. While we believe that our business practices do not violate either antitrust law or our FRAND (fair, reasonable and non-discriminatory) licensing commitments, significant evaluation and judgment were required in determining the impact of such ruling on the amount of licensing revenues estimated and recognized in fiscal 2019. This included, among other items: (i) evaluating whether our license agreements remain valid and enforceable, (ii) evaluating licensees’ conduct and whether they remain committed to perform their respective obligations and (iii) determining the expected impact, if any, to revenues of any license agreements that may be renegotiated and/or are newly entered into. Based on this evaluation, the impact of the ruling was not material to QTL licensing revenues in fiscal 2019 based on facts and factors currently known by us. As new information becomes available, we may be required to make adjustments to revenues in subsequent periods to reflect changes in estimates and/or this matter could have a material adverse effect on our ability to recognize future licensing revenues.
We measure revenues (including our estimates of sales-based royalties) based on the amount of consideration we expect to receive in exchange for products or services. We record reductions to revenues for customer incentive arrangements, including volume-related and other pricing rebates and cost reimbursements for marketing and other activities involving certain of our products and technologies, in the period that the related revenues are earned. The charges for such arrangements are recorded as a reduction to accounts receivable, net or as other current liabilities based on whether we have the intent and contractual right of offset. Certain of these charges are considered variable consideration and are included in the transaction price primarily based on estimating the most likely amount expected to be provided to the customer/licensee.
Revenues recognized from sales of our products and sales-based royalties are generally included in accounts receivable, net (including unbilled receivables) based on our unconditional right to payment for satisfied or partially satisfied performance obligations.
We disaggregate our revenues by segment (Note 8) and type of product and services (as presented on our consolidated statement of operations), as we believe this best depicts how the nature, amount, timing and uncertainty of our revenues and cash flows are affected by economic factors. Substantially all of QCT’s revenues consist of equipment revenues that are recognized at a point in time, and substantially all of QTL’s revenues represent licensing revenues that are recognized over time.
Revenues recognized from performance obligations satisfied (or partially satisfied) in previous periods were $4.1 billion for fiscal 2019, and primarily related to licensing revenues of $4.7 billion recognized in the third quarter of fiscal 2019 (a portion of which was attributable to fiscal 2019) resulting from the settlement with Apple and its contract manufacturers, consisting of a payment from Apple and the release of certain of our obligations to pay Apple and the contract manufacturers customer-related liabilities.
Unearned revenues (which are considered contract liabilities) consist primarily of license fees for intellectual property with continuing performance obligations. In fiscal 2019, we recognized revenues of $481 million that were recorded as unearned revenues at October 1, 2018.
Remaining performance obligations, substantially all of which are included in unearned revenues, represent the aggregate amount of the transaction price of certain customer contracts yet to be recognized as revenues as of the end of the reporting period and exclude revenues related to (a) contracts that have an original expected duration of one year or less and (b) sales-based royalties (i.e., future royalty revenues) pursuant to our license agreements. Our remaining performance obligations are primarily comprised of certain customer contracts for which QTL received license fees upfront. At September 29, 2019, we had $1.7 billion of remaining performance obligations, of which $544 million, $453 million, $440 million, $196 million and $50 million is expected to be recognized as revenues for each of the subsequent five years from fiscal 2020 through 2024, respectively, and $27 million thereafter.
Concentrations. A significant portion of our revenues are concentrated with a small number of customers/licensees of our QCT and QTL segments. Revenues from three customers/licensees comprised 24%, 15% and 10% of total consolidated revenues in fiscal 2019 and 11%, 16% and 11% in fiscal 2018. Revenues from two customers/licensees comprised 18% and 17% in fiscal 2017. Revenues in 2018 and 2017 were negatively impacted by our prior dispute with Apple Inc. and its contract manufacturers (Hon Hai Precision Industry Co., Ltd./Foxconn, its affiliates and other suppliers to Apple). Revenues in fiscal 2019 were positively impacted by our settlement of such dispute in the third quarter of fiscal 2019.
We rely on sole- or limited-source suppliers for some products, particularly products in the QCT segment, subjecting us to possible shortages of raw materials or manufacturing capacity. While we have established alternate suppliers for certain technologies that we consider critical, the loss of a supplier or the inability of a supplier to meet performance or quality specifications or delivery schedules could harm our ability to meet our delivery obligations and/or negatively impact our revenues, business operations and ability to compete for future business.
Shipping and Handling Costs. Costs incurred for shipping and handling are included in cost of revenues. Amounts billed to a customer for shipping and handling are reported as revenues.
Share-Based Compensation. Share-based compensation expense for equity-classified awards, principally related to restricted stock units (RSUs), is measured at the grant date, or at the acquisition date for awards assumed in business combinations, based on the estimated fair value of the award and is recognized over the employee’s requisite service period. The fair values of RSUs are estimated based on the fair market values of the underlying stock on the dates of grant or dates the RSUs are assumed. If RSUs do not have the right to participate in dividends, the fair values are discounted by the dividend yield. Share-based compensation expense is adjusted to exclude amounts related to share-based awards that are expected to be forfeited.
Legal and Regulatory Proceedings. We are currently involved in certain legal and regulatory proceedings. Litigation and investigations are inherently uncertain, and we face difficulties in evaluating or estimating likely outcomes or ranges of possible loss in antitrust and trade regulation investigations in particular. Investigations by antitrust and trade regulation agencies are not conducted in a consistent manner across jurisdictions. Further, each country and agency has different sets of laws, rules and regulations, both substantive and procedural, as well as different legal principles, theories and potential remedies, and some agencies may seek to use the investigation to advance domestic policy goals. Depending on the jurisdiction, these investigations can involve non-transparent procedures under which we may not receive access to evidence relied upon by the enforcement agency or that may be exculpatory and may not be informed of the specific legal theories or evidence considered or relied upon by the agency. Unlike in civil litigation in the United States, in foreign proceedings, we may not be entitled to discovery or depositions, allowed to cross-examine witnesses or confront our accusers. As a result, we
may not be aware of, and may not be entitled to know, all allegations against us, or the information or documents provided to, or discovered or prepared by, the agency. Accordingly, we may have little or no idea what an agency’s intent is with respect to liability, penalties or the timing of a decision. In many cases the agencies are given significant discretion, and any available precedent may have limited, if any, predictive value in their jurisdictions, much less in other jurisdictions. Accordingly, we cannot predict the outcome of these matters.
If there is at least a reasonable possibility that a material loss may have been incurred associated with pending legal and regulatory proceedings, we disclose such fact, and if reasonably estimable, we provide an estimate of the possible loss or range of possible loss. We record our best estimate of a loss related to pending legal and regulatory proceedings when the loss is considered probable and the amount can be reasonably estimated. Where a range of loss can be reasonably estimated with no best estimate in the range, we record the minimum estimated liability. As additional information becomes available, we assess the potential liability related to pending legal and regulatory proceedings and revise our estimates and update our disclosures accordingly. Our legal costs associated with defending ourself are recorded to expense as incurred.
Foreign Currency. Certain foreign subsidiaries use a local currency as the functional currency. Resulting translation gains or losses are recorded as a component of accumulated other comprehensive income. Transaction gains or losses related to balances denominated in a currency other than the functional currency are recognized in the consolidated statements of operations.
Income Taxes. The asset and liability approach is used to recognize deferred tax assets and liabilities for the expected future tax consequences of temporary differences between the carrying amounts and the tax bases of assets and liabilities. Tax law and rate changes are reflected in income in the period such changes are enacted. We record a valuation allowance to reduce deferred tax assets to the amount that is more likely than not to be realized. We include interest and penalties related to income taxes, including unrecognized tax benefits, within income tax expense. We classify all deferred tax assets and liabilities as noncurrent in the consolidated balance sheets.
Our income tax returns are based on calculations and assumptions that are subject to examination by the Internal Revenue Service and other tax authorities. In addition, the calculation of our tax liabilities involves dealing with uncertainties in the application of complex tax regulations. We recognize liabilities for uncertain tax positions based on a two-step process. The first step is to evaluate the tax position for recognition by determining if the weight of available evidence indicates that it is more likely than not that the position will be sustained on audit, including resolution of related appeals or litigation processes, if any. The second step is to measure the tax benefit as the largest amount that is more than 50% likely of being realized upon settlement. While we believe we have appropriate support for the positions taken on our tax returns, we regularly assess the potential outcomes of examinations by tax authorities in determining the adequacy of our provision for income taxes. We continually assess the likelihood and amount of potential adjustments and adjust the income tax provision, income taxes payable and deferred taxes in the period in which the facts that give rise to a revision become known.
We recognize excess tax benefits and shortfall tax detriments associated with share-based awards in the consolidated statements of operations, as a component of income tax expense, when realized.
Earnings (Loss) Per Common Share. Basic earnings (loss) per common share is computed by dividing net income (loss) attributable to Qualcomm by the weighted-average number of common shares outstanding during the reporting period. Diluted earnings per common share is computed by dividing net income attributable to Qualcomm by the combination of dilutive common share equivalents, comprised of shares issuable under our share-based compensation plans and shares subject to accelerated share repurchase agreements, if any, and the weighted-average number of common shares outstanding during the reporting period. The accelerated share repurchase agreements were entered into in fiscal 2018 (Note 4) and, due to the net loss in fiscal 2018, all of the common share equivalents issuable under share-based compensation plans had an anti-dilutive effect and were therefore excluded from the computation of diluted loss per share. The following table provides information about the diluted earnings per share calculation (in millions):
Recent Accounting Pronouncements Not Yet Adopted.
Leases: In February 2016, the FASB issued new accounting guidance related to leases that outlines a comprehensive lease accounting model and supersedes the current lease accounting guidance. The new accounting guidance requires lessees to recognize right-of-use assets and corresponding lease liabilities on the balance sheet for leases with a lease term of greater than 12 months. It also changes the definition of a lease and expands the disclosure requirements of lease arrangements. We will adopt the new accounting guidance in the first quarter of fiscal 2020 using the modified retrospective approach and will not restate comparative periods. In addition, we will elect certain practical expedients. We do not expect finance leases to be material at the time of adoption. We currently expect to record lease assets and liabilities of approximately $400 million to $500 million on our consolidated balance sheet upon adoption. We do not expect the adoption of the new accounting guidance will have a material impact on our consolidated statements of operations or consolidated statements of cash flows.
Financial Assets: In June 2016, the FASB issued new accounting guidance that changes the accounting for recognizing impairments of financial assets. Under the new accounting guidance, credit losses for financial assets held at amortized cost will be estimated based on expected losses rather than the current incurred loss impairment model. The new accounting guidance also modifies the impairment model for available-for-sale debt securities. The new accounting guidance generally requires the modified retrospective transition method, with the cumulative effect of applying the new accounting guidance recognized as an adjustment to opening retained earnings in the year of adoption, except for certain financial assets where the prospective transition method is required, such as available-for-sale debt securities for which an other-than-temporary impairment has been recorded. We will adopt the new accounting guidance in the first quarter of fiscal 2021, and the impact of this new accounting guidance will largely depend on the composition and credit quality of our investment portfolio, as well as economic conditions at the time of adoption.
No definition available.
The entire disclosure for organization, consolidation and basis of presentation of financial statements disclosure.
Reference 1: http://fasb.org/us-gaap/role/ref/legacyRef