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Intel vs VIA – get it sorted, demand Mobo makers

Not interested, just want it over and done with

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Intel suing VIA? Pah! VIA countersuing Intel? Tish and pish! Taiwan's mobo makers couldn't give the proverbial flying fig for the two chip makers' spat. It will have no effect on their shipment plans, sources close to the likes of Asus, MSI and Gigabyte have said, according to DigiTimes.

In a way they're actually looking forward to the fight's outcome. As we here on the Reg suggested last month, taking the case to court will allow an independent authority to judge each company's claims as to the legitimacy of VIA's rights to use the Pentium 4 bus.

Intel sued VIA on 7 September, just days before it formally launched its i845 chipset for the P4. VIA countersued on the 10th with the claim that Intel has violated its P4 patents. VIA's P4X266 chipsets supports faster, DDR memory than the i845's single data rate SDRAM.

The mobo makers say a quick settlement of the dispute will allow them at least to make properly informed decisions as to which chipsets to use. That said, most of them appear to have P4X266 products in the works. A resolution to the Intel/VIA tussle would allow them to ramp up the volume.

Taking a wild stab in the dark, we reckon VIA and Intel will settle with a patent cross-licensing deal, but not until Q4 when SiS and Acer Labs, two of the three official P4 bus licensees, have begun shipping their P4/DDR chipsets in volume and Intel has begun initial shipments of the DDR version of the i845. We shall see. ®

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