NVIDIA Patent war

Samsung Hopes To Ban Nvidia Chips in The United States in Latest Legal Move

November 22, 2014 - Written By Phil Bourget

We heard back at the beginning of September that Samsung was being sued by Nvidia for infringing on patents for the GPUs (graphics processor units) that Samsung makes.  We also heard about that time that Samsung was going to go full-belt, and go ‘all measures necessary’ to fight the legal battle.  After Samsung’s moves to counter-sue and  get the tables turned in their favor, the South Korean manufacturing giant looks to have another rather large and Apple-shaped card up their legal sleeve.

Samsung has filed a complaint with the ITC, who is evaluating their case already, in hopes of banning the sale of Nvidia’s GPUs in markets of obvious interest.  Guess which one yet?  The United States.  The United States, interestingly enough, is where Nvidia is based; Santa Clara, CA, in fact.  So, the move to have Nvidia banned from sale in its home country is a rather, to put it nicely, gutsy and major.  As it stands, Nvidia’s GPUs are often used in computers rather than phones or tablets, save for HTC’s Nexus 9, and Nvidia’s Shield Tablet and Shield Portable Android devices.

This ban is not unwarranted, given that Nvidia itself asked an import restriction on any Samsung device that used either the reportedly infringing Exynos or Snapdragon processors upon filing its initiating complaint back in September.  The issue with this case is that phones and tablets are being used in greater amounts as media devices, for watching tv and movies from online stores or just watching YouTube videos and playing video games when on the bus to work, or on the ride home from the grocery store (if you’re a kid, anyway).  The need for improved GPUs is great, and this case could cause a lot of problems in the race to improve the graphical performance of mobile devices.

The two manufacturers have already denied using the other’s technologies, though Nvidia has said that Samsung doing so was a ‘predictable tactic’.  We will have to wait to see if any news develops and any new moves are made by either company, but in the meantime, we know this much: Nvidia looks forward to going after Samsung for the initial claim of patent infringement from September.  Who of the involved companies do you think is in the right or wrong here?  Patents are good ways to secure ideas and techniques / technologies, but they have caused more harm than good in recent years.  Are patents viable as means of ‘ownership’ anymore?  Let us know down below.