The discrepancies between Intel and Nvidia over the terms of a 2004 chipset licensing agreement have unsurprisingly evolved into a into a full-on legal showdown, with the former now seeking a declaratory judgment
that would prevent Nvidia from peddling nForce motherboards that support any Intel processor with integrated memory controller functionality.
They are of course referring to the Nehalem architecture behind Core i7, which is their first to use an embedded memory controller that the company calls QuickPath Interconnect (QPI). Intel maintains that the agreements between the two does not extend to those technologies while Nvidia says that they contain no language that limits the licensing to specific products and does not carry any sort of expiration date.
Furthermore, Nvidia’s president and CEO Jen-Hsun Huang has publicly accused the chip maker of trying to pull licensing as a way of dominating the computer market, adding that Intel is worried because “the CPU has run its course and the soul of the PC is shifting quickly to the GPU.” The graphics firm says it has been trying to resolve the problem with Intel in a “fair and reasonable manner” for more than a year, though it has also had no problem in blaming them for many of the ills that the technology industry is facing – blaming Atom for the backslide in PC sales and noting that their netbook platform is vastly inferior than Ion.