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TSMC and GlobalFoundries resolve legal disputes

by Mark Tyson on 29 October 2019, 10:11


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All legal wrangling between TSMC and GlobalFoundries ended today. The chip foundries decided to play nicely and sign a "broad life-of-patents cross-license to each other’s worldwide existing semiconductor patents as well as those patents that will be filed during the next ten years," relays an official TSMC news post.

Unlike some legal tussles this one has been relatively short lived, which is a smart move for all involved. It was only back in late August when HEXUS reported that GlobalFoundries filed a lawsuit against TSMC for patent infringements in semiconductor manufacturing technology. Companies such as Apple, Google, Qualcomm, Cisco Systems, Nvidia, Broadcom, Xilinx, Lenovo and Motorola could have had their products in the firing line of sales bans in many countries across the world.

In the wake of the GlobalFoundries lawsuit news TSMC almost immediately responded saying that it would "vigorously defend its proprietary technology in response to GlobalFoundries complaints." Earlier this month TSMC responded in the courts, as its legal team lodged a counter-suit alleging GlobalFoundries had infringed upon multiple patents that it owned.

Statements today from both TSMC and GlobalFoundries appeared to communicate relief that the legal issues were behind them. TSMC General Counsel, Sylvia Fang, called the development positive for all customers and noted it should enable "the entire semiconductor industry to thrive and prosper." Similarly, GlobalFoundries CEO, Thomas Caulfield, said the companies would now be able to go forward unhindered by rival legal / patent concerns "to focus on innovation and to better serve our clients around the world," adding that the broad global patent cross licensing strategy was "a win for the entire semiconductor industry".

HEXUS Forums :: 4 Comments

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Good for consumers, bad for lawyers. I like it!
I wonder if TSMC played hard ball. Both parties have a lot to lose but TSMC is so much bigger and has a much bugger portfolio that could help GF.

This could mean that GFs lawsuit did have some legs on it.

But then TSMC reminded them of the size difference and offered a way out that is cross beneficial to both parties. GF knowing this got a good deal and TSMC doesn't have to worry about GF. Out of all the ways these two lawsuits could have gone, this is the best case for GF and the consumers.

Very surprised this wasn't dragged out…
…but what is the future of GF? Last time I heard they have abandoned RnD on lower lithography chips.
I bet the lawyers are crying their little hearts out :clapping:
Just before Xmas as well!!!!!!!