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Mobo makers dash to prep VIA-based P4 boards

Now the war's over

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Asustek and MSI have said they will release motherboards based on VIA's upcoming 800MHz frontside bus Pentium 4 chipset, the PT400, DigiTimes reports. Gigabyte said it is evaluating the technology.

Surprise, surprise. No sooner is the long-running legal battle between VIA and Intel sorted out, and the mobo makers decide they want to offer VIA-based Pentium 4 products after all.

During the fight, Elitegroup was the only major mobo player willing to release boards based on VIA's P4X range, which Intel at the time claimed violated its intellectual property. Indeed, Elitegroup was named as a co-defendant. Such action persuaded other mobo makers that discretion was the better part of valour.

VIA was forced to release its own line of motherboards in order to ship its own chipsets in volume.

Elitegroup gambled that the lawsuits would be settled soon enough. In September 2001 we predicted that VIA and Intel would come together and cross-license their respective patents. We got the date wrong - we thought it would happen in 2002.

DigiTimes reports that MSI's PT400-based board is due next month, Asustek's in June. ®

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