Nvidia Fires Back At Intel With Countersuit

Nvidia replied to Intel's Feb. 19 lawsuit against the graphics chip maker with a countersuit filed Thursday in Delaware. Nvidia, headquartered in Santa Clara, Calif., is suing Intel for breach of contract in a dispute over the two companies' 2004 patent-licensing agreement and is further seeking to end Intel's license to Nvidia's patent portfolio.

Intel, also based in Santa Clara, alleges in its suit that Nvidia is not licensed under the agreement to market chipsets for use with Intel processors that feature integrated memory controllers, a feature of Intel's new microarchitecture code named Nehalem that is present in the chip maker's Core i7 desktop processors launched last year and its upcoming line of Nehalem-class Xeon server chips.

Intel also alleges that Nvidia has breached the contract by making "false and misleading" statements about the licensing agreement to the trade press and Intel customers, to the effect that Nvidia has claimed it is licensed to market the disputed chipsets.

In its countersuit, Nvidia claims it is licensed to make the chipsets in question under "a broad, long-term license to make chipsets for Intel's CPUs."

Sponsored post

"Nvidia did not initiate this legal dispute," Nvidia CEO Jen-Hsun Huang said in a statement outlining the company's countersuit. "But we must defend ourselves and the rights we negotiated for when we provided Intel access to our valuable patents. Intel's actions are intended to block us from making use of the very license rights that they agreed to provide."