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Intel sues Via – by mistake…

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Updated Confusion now surrounds a law suit Intel took against chipset manufacturer and chief rival Via Technologies. The federal action was filed against the Taiwanese company in the US on the 28th of April last. Sean Davidson, a marketing executive from Via in Taiwan, has emailed us since we first filed the story early yesterday, to say: "There are no details from this end other than to say that it appears that the supposed lawsuit was the result of a misunderstanding from one of their legal counsels. "Intel did contact our US office to clarify the mistake and apologise for the inconvenience. According to our US office, as soon as the mistake became public Intel filed dismissal of the suit. Other than that VIA has no public statement on this matter," said Davidson. So it appears that Intel sues people by mistake... According to US wire Semiconductor Business News, following up our story, the law suit is being held "in abeyance" and filing it last week was an error. It may re-file the suit. The "mistake" concerns chipset support for Slot One technology. Next time, if there is a next time, the suit might be filed "on purpose". At the same time, Motorola and Intel appear to have settled their differences, following an allegation that the latter had stolen trade secrets from Motorola. (See original story: Motorola legals Intel) That case centred around an allegation by Motorola that Intel had gained access to PowerPC secrets after it poached staff from its Somerset, Austin, facility. Details of Intel's action against Via are scanty. Today is a bank holiday in the UK and public relations staff were not available for comment. The Taiwanese chip firm has crossed swords with Intel before. And, over the course of this year, Via has caused considerable headaches for Intel because of its support for the PC-133 and later PC-266 memory standards, which the chip giant has re-iterated it will never support, despite problems with Rambus. In early April, Via and S3 patched together a strategic agreement to cooperate on graphics chipsets. This also antagonised Intel, which viewed S3 as its close partner. Neither Motorola nor Intel would reveal details of their settlement. ®

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