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Intel and NVIDIA settle patent dispute with 6-year $1.5B deal

post #1 of 19
Thread Starter 
Intel and NVIDIA have announced a six-year $1.5 billion cross-licensing agreement that resolves a lengthy patent dispute between the two companies and could lead to close integration of NVIDIA GPUs with Intel's processors.

According to the agreement, which was announced Monday afternoon, Intel will pay NVIDIA $1.5 billion over the next six years in exchange for access to NVIDIA's patent portfolio, including technology related to GPUs and supercomputers, Ars Technica reports. In turn, NVIDIA will gain access to part of Intel's patent portfolio, such as patents covering microprocessors and chipsets, though the deal excludes proprietary Intel x86 designs and flash memory.

"The cross-licensing agreement allows Intel to integrate NVIDIA technologies and those that are covered by our patents into their CPUs, such as Sandy Bridge, for example," said NVIDIA CEO Jen-Hsun Huang. "And a cross-license allows us to build processors and take advantage of Intel patents for the types of processor we're buildingProject Denver, Tegra, and the types of processors we're going to build in the future."

According to the report's author, Jon Stokes, "Intel could use the licensing agreement to produce a Sandy Bridge successor with an on-die GPU based on NVIDIA technology."

Huang revealed Monday that the company has no plans to produce further Intel-compatible chipsets, despite the settlement. NVIDIA will instead focus on ARM-based processors such as its Tegra system-on-a-chip for mobile devices and the newly announced "Project Denver" CPU for desktops. Microsoft recently announced that Windows 8 will run on the ARM architecture, which could provide NVIDIA with the opportunity needed to challenge Intel in the PC market.

The deal settles a heated patent dispute between the two chipmakers. In February 2009, Intel sued NVIDIA to block it from developing compatible chipsets for next-generation Intel processors, claiming that a patent-licensing agreement between the two companies did not extend to processors with integrated memory functionality.

NVIDIA struck back with a countersuit, arguing that Intel had "manufactured this licensing dispute as part of a calculated strategy to eliminate NVIDIA as a competitive threat." Later that year, NVIDIA announced that it was placing development of future hardware on hold until its lawsuits with Intel were resolved.

The patent dispute has adversely affected Apple, which has preferred Nvidia's discrete graphics chips over Intel's integrated graphics. The Cupertino, Calif., Mac maker even developed its own proprietary graphics switching solution to alternate between the NVIDIA GPU for peak performance and the integrated Intel graphics for energy saving. Apple first abandoned Intel's chipsets for NVIDIA's in its MacBook line in October 2008.

Reports emerged in December of last year that 2011 MacBook models with screen sizes of 13 inches and under will use dedicated graphics on Intel's Sandy Bridge processor instead of including an NVIDIA GPU.

Intel formally unveiled its new Sandy Bridge product line at last week's Consumer Electronics show. In response to high interest from chip buyers, Intel has accelerated production of its Sandy Bridge chips. Apple is expected to begin incorporating the line into its Macs in the first half of this year.

post #2 of 19
Why doesn't Intel just buy NVIDIA, their own graphics chips are crap & AMD has ATI.
post #3 of 19
So... Who won?
(I know who lost!)
Progress is a comfortable disease
--e.e.c.
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Progress is a comfortable disease
--e.e.c.
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post #4 of 19
So, basically, a $1.5B licensing deal. I bet they are popping some corks at Nvidia.
post #5 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bageljoey View Post

So... Who won?
(I know who lost!)

Lawyers... of course...
Hmmmmmm...
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Hmmmmmm...
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post #6 of 19
How many billion dollar payoffs can one corporation get before they get criminal activities filed against them?

Corporate Espionage needs to become a felony. This is a joke. They paid off Digital, AMD and now Nvidia.
post #7 of 19
Oh damn I guess this increases the probably of their product being included in Macs again.
post #8 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by ascii View Post

Oh damn I guess this increases the probably of their product being included in Macs again.

Not if they raise the hackles of Der Jobs.

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Proud AAPL stock owner.

 

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post #9 of 19
We'll, they've certainly taken their time, but I think that this agreement may not be the worst thing that could have happened.
But they should have figured this out way back! The losers are the consumers

I'm just looking forward to a CPU with an integrated NVIDIA GPU.
post #10 of 19
Remember Intel only has access to the patents, this doesn't change Nvidia's decision to exit the chipset business. The question is whether Intel will use this new technology well. Patents really only outline the basic operation of a technology, it's up to Intel to decide on how that works and how to implement it.
post #11 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by mdriftmeyer View Post

How many billion dollar payoffs can one corporation get before they get criminal activities filed against them?

Corporate Espionage needs to become a felony. This is a joke. They paid off Digital, AMD and now Nvidia.

Yup Intel buys justice yet again. This time 1.5billion is a small, negligible amount to pay for their BundleGate of forcing everyone to get shafted with nonsense GPUs bundled with good Intel CPUs. Ironically Nvidia is their best hope of getting any reasonable IGP in their CPU/APU this decade.

Quote:
Originally Posted by MacApple21 View Post

We'll, they've certainly taken their time, but I think that this agreement may not be the worst thing that could have happened.
But they should have figured this out way back! The losers are the consumers

I'm just looking forward to a CPU with an integrated NVIDIA GPU.

I hope it's not just talk and Nvidia just lapping up the payoff scraps from Intel. Nvidia still isn't going to make chipsets for Intel, they as mentioned will focus on ARM and discrete GPUs.

There is the possibility that if they actually worked better together they would both win. Intel with Nvidia GPU on die would really give AMD nightmares. And Nvidia hoping to make a CPU? That's as crazy as Intel trying to make a GPU!
post #12 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by nvidia2008 View Post

There is the possibility that if they actually worked better together they would both win. Intel with Nvidia GPU on die would really give AMD nightmares. And Nvidia hoping to make a CPU? That's as crazy as Intel trying to make a GPU!

AMD already has nightmares as Intel is executing well. nVidia is already a successful CPU maker given the huge number of Tegra 2 design wins.
post #13 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by nvidia2008 View Post

There is the possibility that if they actually worked better together they would both win. Intel with Nvidia GPU on die would really give AMD nightmares. And Nvidia hoping to make a CPU? That's as crazy as Intel trying to make a GPU!

Why? People already mentioned Tegra, and Nvidia's plan with Denver is to do the opposite of Intel did with i5: They what a massively powerful mobile GPU with CPU cores integrated. If Nvidia can convince developers to use CUDA/OpenCL/Grand Central on their applications this could be the processor of the future.

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iPhone 4S 64GB, Black, soon to be sold in favor of a Nokia Lumia 920
Early 2010 MacBook Pro 2.4GHz, soon to be replaced with a Retina MacBook Pro, or an Asus U500

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post #14 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by ascii View Post

Oh damn I guess this increases the probably of their product being included in Macs again.

Nvidia is holding firm with their conviction to stop building supporting chipsets to accommodate Intel-manufactured CPUs.

Undoubtedly they will continue to sell "dedicated" graphics cards for PCs and Macs.

But they aren't interested in manufacturing "embedded GPUs". (Where embedded, in this context, refers to what you'd generically recognize as GPU chips that share memory with system RAM instead of having their own separate video RAM.)

Now, we have another classification of "embedded GPUs" to deal with, wherein the GPU is actually inside the same silicon as the main system CPU. These types of GPUs, by their nature, can only be produced as part of the same fabrication process that produces the CPU itself -- and so, it will be up to Intel to manufacture them. This licensing deal means that Intel will have permission to use technology patented by Nvidia, to improve the capabilities of those Intel-manufactured on-chip GPUs, extending them beyond the capabilities that Intel had hitherto managed to develop in-house.

Intel clearly decided that acquiring permission to access those technologies was worth paying Nvidia at least $1.5 billion, plus granting additional patent licenses to Nvidia in exchange. That sounds to me like a vote of confidence that perhaps we were better off with Nvidia's GPU stuff inside Macs, than we have been with the GPU stuff Intel has managed to offer us so far.
post #15 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by nht View Post

AMD already has nightmares as Intel is executing well. nVidia is already a successful CPU maker given the huge number of Tegra 2 design wins.

something tells me the new AMD chips are gonna blow the new Intel ones away.

one of intels large advantages right now, is that they have MUCH better ghraphics preformance with Sandy Bridge: on level with the 5450...

http://www.notebookcheck.net/Intel-H...0.37948.0.html

i believe the AMD APU's will blow these out of the water, probably will be cheaper than the SB cpu's.

considering this http://www.anandtech.com/show/3933/a...ormance-update

that zacate at 18W managed to beat i520m which has low clock of 2.4 ghz, zacate largest is 1.6 ghz- dual core.

by about 50%... saying this will be about even with SB.... but cost half the price

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PC means personal computer.  

i have processing issues, mostly trying to get my ideas into speech and text.

if i say something confusing please tell me!

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post #16 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by hezetation View Post

Why doesn't Intel just buy NVIDIA, their own graphics chips are crap & AMD has ATI.

Nvidia is expensive. Even for Intel.

This is good news though. They will both do much better working together. AMD could eventually pose a threat to Intel if they don't do something to improve their GPU performance.
post #17 of 19
The Arstechnica article was flawed as originally written, Stokes even fessed up to it and blames his fever heh. Go to Anandtech for more info
post #18 of 19
It's about time Intel and nVidia started playing nice. AMD and ATi teaming up put the whole market in play.

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MacBook Pro 15" | Intel Core2 Duo 2.66GHz | 320GB HDD | OS X v10.9
Black/Space Grey iPad Air with Wi-Fi & LTE | 128GB | On 4GEE
White iPhone 6 | 64GB | On 3UK

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post #19 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lukeskymac View Post

Why? People already mentioned Tegra, and Nvidia's plan with Denver is to do the opposite of Intel did with i5: They what a massively powerful mobile GPU with CPU cores integrated. If Nvidia can convince developers to use CUDA/OpenCL/Grand Central on their applications this could be the processor of the future.

This smells of Nvidia fail (yes my username is now ironic - remember it was from the glory days of '08).
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