Nvidia sues Samsung and Qualcomm, seeks to block Galaxy S5, Note 4

NVIDIA logoNvidia has sued Samsung and Qualcomm in a pair of legal actions claiming that the processors used in a range of Samsung products—including the Galaxy Note 4, Galaxy Note Edge, Galaxy S5, Galaxy Note 3, and Galaxy S4 smartphones, and Galaxy Tab S and Galaxy Note Pro tablets—violate seven different GPU patents.

Nvidia has sued Samsung and Qualcomm in the Delaware federal court and is seeking unspecified damages. Simultaneously, the company is asking the International Trade Commission to impose an import ban on Samsung products made in South Korea, Vietnam, and China.

The GPU firm's complaint claims that the Qualcomm Adreno GPUs, found in its range of Snapdragon systems-on-chip, ARM Mali GPUs, and Imagination PowerVR GPUs, both found in Samsung's own Exynos SoCs, all violate Nvidia patents on graphics technology. The patents cover various core GPU technologies, such as multithreaded processing of graphical data, graphics pipelines that include shaders and rasterizers, and programmable GPUs.

Nvidia says that it has been in discussion with Samsung since August 2012 to negotiate license terms for its patents. These talks have so far come to nothing, with Samsung apparently telling Nvidia that it was the problem of its suppliers: Qualcomm, ARM, and Imagination. Nvidia also says that other companies in the industry have licensed these patents, including Intel, which has paid Nvidia $1.5 billion over five years as part of a patent cross-licensing agreement.

The graphics company notes that after 21 years in the graphics business, and with more than 7,000 patents issued or pending, this is the first time it has initiated a patent lawsuit.

Source: Ars Technica

Tags: GPU, legal action, NVIDIA, Qualcomm, Samsung

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