AMD wants some LG, Vizio products banned in US as part of patent infringement complaint

midian182

Posts: 6,648   +59
Staff member

We’re used to hearing about patent infringement cases in the tech world, but recent years have seen most of these high-profile lawsuits involve Apple and Samsung. Now, semiconductor manufacturer AMD has filed a patent complaint. The firm has requested the United States International Trade Commission (ITC) investigate claims that several companies infringed its graphics processing patents.

The complaint, which was filed last month, accuses MediaTek, LG, Vizio, and Sigma Designs of manufacturing products that infringe on two patents filed by ATI (acquired by AMD in 2006) and one from AMD itself. The infringements relate to technologies such as unified shaders, graphics processing architecture, and parallel pipeline graphics systems.

As reported by Anandtech, the unusual part of this complaint is that these companies license their GPU tech from third party developers like Imagination and ARM. But, given that it’s easier to sue over physical products than ideas, AMD is suing the manufacturers instead.

Some of the alleged infringing products include MediaTek’s Helio P10 SoC that’s used in certain LG smartphones, such as the LG X Power, as well as Sigma’s SX7 (STV7701) SoC for UHD TVs with HDR support, which is used by Vizio in its high-end televisions.

AMD points out that both Samsung and GlobalFoundries have licensed its IPs covered by the patents in question. The company states that anyone infringing on its patents damages legitimate licensees of AMD intellectual property.

AMD wants the infringing devices banned from import and sale in the US, which would affect multiple products from LG and Vizio. Expect this case to spend quite a few years in the courts.   

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SirDigby

Posts: 787   +586
That doesn't make sense... Don't ban the products that use other products infringing on the patents, seek damages and royalty backpay from the companies that are infringing?
 

Tanstar

Posts: 659   +201
That doesn't make sense... Don't ban the products that use other products infringing on the patents, seek damages and royalty backpay from the companies that are infringing?
If they don't appear to be trying to protect their patent they could lose it. This is probably a legal step in "protecting the patent".
 

SirDigby

Posts: 787   +586
If they don't appear to be trying to protect their patent they could lose it. This is probably a legal step in "protecting the patent".
I just think they are going after the wrong people, y'know, the ones who actually did infringe...
 

Steed

Posts: 46   +27
Thing is, if you go after the lower hanging fruit, its cheaper and easier than taking on the likes of ARM directly. If they can manage to get a win, it will frighten future customers as well as existing customers of these SOCs into a potential settlement. So there is a definite strategy here. Only time will tell how well this works out.
 

Vrmithrax

Posts: 1,577   +628
Thing is, if you go after the lower hanging fruit, its cheaper and easier than taking on the likes of ARM directly. If they can manage to get a win, it will frighten future customers as well as existing customers of these SOCs into a potential settlement. So there is a definite strategy here. Only time will tell how well this works out.

Exactly right. Go after the easier targets, and get a ruling in your favor, then you have something under your belt to go after the rest. At the very least, you get a precedent to cite in your legal arguments, if it comes down to dragging others into the courts.
 

Evernessince

Posts: 5,464   +6,145
This isn't surprising given that Nvidia and AMD have the lion's share of GPU Patents. If they didn't start taking action these companies could simply copy their designs.