Feeds

Intel hits AMD with patent breach claim

Never trust an IP agreement

Choosing a cloud hosting partner with confidence

AMD piled more worries on its shareholders and partners today when it revealed that Intel is threatening to pull a 2001 cross-licensing agreement between the two firms.

In an SEC filing, AMD said it had received "correspondence" from Intel relating to the firm's 2001 Patent Cross License Agreement, which "(i) alleges that the Company has committed a material breach of the Cross License through the creation of the Company's GLOBALFOUNDRIES joint venture and (ii) purports to terminate the Company's rights and licenses under the Cross License in 60 days if the alleged breach has not been corrected".

GLOBALFOUNDRIES is what used to be AMD's chip making business, which the firm spun-out recently in partnership with that well-known Silicon Valley player, the government of Abu Dhabi.

AMD did not detail the nature of the breach, which it in any case insists it hasn't actually made. However, it might be a fair guess that Intel is keen to ensure that none of its IP is hawked to other companies via GLOBALFOUNDRIES.

An Intel spokesman said in a statement, "Intel believes that the formation of Global Foundries is not a subsidiary under terms of the agreement and is therefore not licensed under a 2001 patent cross license agreement and that AMD violated the agreement.

Intel said it was happy to license IP, "However Intel does not believe AMD can unilaterally extend Intel's rights to a 3rd party without Intel's consent."

Intel would, presumably, prefer to do any such IP prolifertion itself - as it recently did with TSMC.

AMD will keep the legal merrygoround spinning, maintaining "that Intel's purported attempt to terminate the Company's rights and licenses under the Cross License itself constitutes a material breach of the Cross License by Intel which gives the Company the right to terminate Intel's rights and licenses under the Cross License Agreement while retaining the Company's rights and licenses under the Cross License Agreement".

The two firm's legal departments are no strangers to each other. Apart from the latest patent dispute, the two firms have long running anti-trust disputes, most prominently in Europe.

AMD and Intel spent most of the 1990s suing each other after AMD used a co-processor agreement with Intel to leap full scale into the x86 processor market.

For most of this decade, the two have maintained reasonably friendly relations - the antitrust actions apart.

This is presumably in part because it is Intel's interests that AMD continue to provide some competition in the x86 market. And it is this interest in diverting the eyes of antitrust investigators that will probably mean the latest issue will be resolved. ®

Beginner's guide to SSL certificates

More from The Register

next story
Xperia Z3: Crikey, Sony – ANOTHER flagship phondleslab?
The Fourth Amendment... and it IS better
Ex-US Navy fighter pilot MIT prof: Drones beat humans - I should know
'Missy' Cummings on UAVs, smartcars and dying from boredom
Don't wait for that big iPad, order a NEXUS 9 instead, industry little bird says
Google said to debut next big slab, Android L ahead of Apple event
Microsoft to enter the STRUGGLE of the HUMAN WRIST
It's not just a thumb war, it's total digit war
Netscape Navigator - the browser that started it all - turns 20
It was 20 years ago today, Marc Andreeesen taught the band to play
A drone of one's own: Reg buyers' guide for UAV fanciers
Hardware: Check. Software: Huh? Licence: Licence...?
The Apple launch AS IT HAPPENED: Totally SERIOUS coverage, not for haters
Fandroids, Windows Phone fringe-oids – you wouldn't understand
Apple SILENCES Bose, YANKS headphones from stores
The, er, Beats go on after noise-cancelling spat
prev story

Whitepapers

Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Cloud and hybrid-cloud data protection for VMware
Learn how quick and easy it is to configure backups and perform restores for VMware environments.
Three 1TB solid state scorchers up for grabs
Big SSDs can be expensive but think big and think free because you could be the lucky winner of one of three 1TB Samsung SSD 840 EVO drives that we’re giving away worth over £300 apiece.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.