Intel Files Suit Against Nvidia over Chipset License, Nvidia Accuses Intel of Stifling Innovation

Computer hardware maker Intel has filed a lawsuit against graphics technology manufacturer Nvidia, claiming that Nvidia does not have the license to produce chipsets that are compatible with Intel processors packing integrated memory controllers.

The lawsuit stems from a 2004 license agreement between the two companies. Nvidia believes the agreement allows it to produce nForce motherboards that support the latest Intel hardware, such as Nehalem processors. Intel, quite obviously, disagrees.

"At the heart of this issue is that the CPU has run its course and the soul of the PC is shifting quickly to the GPU," stated Nvidia CEO Jen-Hsun Huang. "This is clearly an attempt to stifle innovation to protect a decaying CPU business."

The first Intel processors with Nehalem architecture premiered in late 2008 with the Core i7s. The multi-core processors utilize shared memory through an integrated memory controller for increased performance over past hardware.

Huang added that Nvidia's innovations, such as ION, SLI, Hybrid power, and CUDA, threaten Intel's ability to control the PC platform.

Nvidia stressed that "the filing does not impact Nvidia chipsets that are currently being shipped," noting that it "has been attempting to resolve the disagreement with Intel in a fair and reasonable manner for over a year."