The U.S. International Trade Commission yesterday upheld a judge's ruling from October which cleared Samsung and Qualcomm of violating NVIDIA's patents in graphics processors integrated into their range of smartphones and tablets, in what's being seen as a significant win for Samsung et al. The ruling stated that the allegedly infringing 'smart' devices from Samsung, which featured Qualcomm graphics hardware, did not infringe on two of NVIDIA's patents whilst a third patent (though infringed upon) was deemed to be invalid.
NVIDIA, Samsung and Qualcomm have been battling it out in the courts since extended talks over licensing NVIDIA's graphics patents broke down. NVIDIA alleged that Samsung hardware violated as many as seven NVIDIA patents and were seeking an import ban on affected hardware. For their part Samsung deny this fact, going so far as arguing that many of NVIDIA's graphics patents should only apply to desktop computing, and aren't applicable to the mobile sector.
In an update on their corporate blog NVIDIA stated:
While today’s ruling ends this particular case in the ITC, we remain firm in our belief that our patents are valid and have been infringed and will look to appeal the ITC’s decision.
The ruling by the US ITC is just the latest skirmish in what's likely to be a protracted dispute between the two tech. giants. NVIDIA's complaints regarding the other patents which were part of the original seven in this case were quietly shelved over the summer, but Federal lawsuits between the parties remain unresolved.
SOURCE: Bloomberg, AnandTech